Ferrero celebrates 50 years in the UK

Ferrero celebrates 50 years in the UK

This year is an important milestone for our business – one we are excited to be celebrating. Not only are we marking 70 years of Ferrero globally, but also 50 years here in the UK.

Ferrero was born in 1946, starting with a small factory in Alba, Italy. 70 years and three generations later, we are proud to have stayed true to a vision that respects our Italian heritage: using only high quality and fresh ingredients to create truly unique brands that delight with exceptional taste and quality.

In the UK, our imagination and creativity has driven the confectionery market over the past five decades and we’ve experienced some exceptional growth. In this post, we wanted to share some of the wonderful moments we have enjoyed and explore the characteristics that not only define Ferrero as a company, but also underpin its success.

Product innovation

We’ve always been known for our innovation. Nutella, our famous hazelnut spread, was one of the first products sold to our UK customers – its unique taste as popular today as it was back then. We launched our Freshmint tic tac in 1970 – the first portable ‘pocket mint’ product. Kinder Surprise arrived in 1974 to become the first chocolate egg to be enjoyed all year round, not just at Easter. With its iconic toy capsule enclosed within, it was – and still is – the perfect treat for the imagination.

The 90s saw the introduction of Kinder Chocolate here in the UK, a unique recipe that was high in milk content and lower in cocoa – the perfect portion-controlled treat. In fact, our products have always come in small portions – 95% have serving sizes of less than 150 calories.

A responsible approach to business

Through each stage in our journey, we're proud to have made every effort to grow responsibly. That means dedication to our CSR commitments, such as supporting sustainability and protecting our farmers; respecting the environment in which our ingredients are grown and harvested; advertising responsibly to our consumers and encouraging active lifestyles.

We also have a responsible approach to nutrition founded on three core principles: enjoy a balanced diet, eat in moderate quantities using small portion sizes and be physically active every day. We believe there is no “good” or “bad” food in itself - only good and bad diets.

In 2013, we partnered with the English Football League Trust to launch our flagship sports and education programme, Kinder + Sport, in the UK. Designed to combat sedentary lifestyles among children and help them understand the joy of moving, we work with football clubs in the Championship and Leagues 1 and 2 to deliver sessions that have a lasting, positive impact on the activity levels of children in the UK. The programme has grown every year – from just a single football club in our pilot year, to working with over 25 clubs, and a target of moving 68,500 children in 2016/17. In 2015/16 alone we moved over 50,000 children!

Our heritage

Ferrero is a family-owned company. Behind the name, the turnover and the expansion of our multinational company, there is the story of a brilliant and strong-willed Piedmontese family who inspire our people and values, helping to drive our business forward.
One of the most recent milestones for our UK company came in August 2015, when we acquired the much-loved British brand and confectioner, Thorntons. Like Ferrero, Thorntons has a rich family history with shared values of quality and heritage.

With Thorntons, we are now a rapidly growing team and are the fourth largest confectionery manufacturer in the UK. We now have three locations: our UK headquarters is situated on a 23-acre plot in Greenford, as well as factories in Alfreton and Cork, Ireland.
As we look ahead to the next 50 years, our goal is to continue to build a strong, sustainable and responsible company that delights our consumers, our partners and our employees with the quality products and experiences we know and love.

Find out more about our CSR initiatives here