Gina Vaynshteyn
February 16, 2015 12:12 pm

On Valentine’s Day, the wonderful dude who brought us those coveted tubs of Nutella, Ferrero chocolates wrapped in fancy-shmancy golden foil, those Kinder chocolate eggs that may or may not be illegal in the US, and Tic-Tacs, passed away. Michele Ferrero was one of the most successful and innovative businessmen, and we will forever be grateful for his excellent taste in candy, and his penchant for all things hazelnut and chocolate.

Ferrero, according to Mashable, was the “richest candyman on the planet,” and he learned the secrets and wonders of Nutella through this father, Pietro Ferrero—who was actually the one to create the sacred concoction. As legend (okay, fact) goes, during World War II, cocoa was very expensive, so Pietro used hazelnuts to thicken the spread, and voila: Nutella was born. After he died in 1949, Pietro passed on his business to Michele, who expanded the chocolate-hazelnut empire into what it is today. So really, you have two great Italians to thank for your All Things Nutella Pinterest board (I know you have one, don’t be ashamed, my friend).

Don’t worry, though. Nutella isn’t going anywhere. Michele’s son, Givovanni has been the CEO of Ferrero since 1997, so keep indulging in your tubs of Nutella with mere spoons, keep smuggling your Kinder eggs from Europe, and keep the tradition of choco-hazelnut goodness alive with your passion and your appetite. Michele Ferrero would want that.

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