Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here
Subscribe to Aleteia's free newsletter: Goodness. Beauty. Truth. No yelling.
Sign me up!

Not Prepared to Donate?

Here are 5 ways you can still help Aleteia:

  1. Pray for our team and the success of our mission
  2. Talk about Aleteia in your parish
  3. Share Aleteia content with friends and family
  4. Turn off your ad blockers when you visit
  5. Subscribe to our free newsletter and read us daily
Thank you!
Team Aleteia

Subscribe

Aleteia

How Ferrero Rocher chocolates were inspired by the Virgin Mary

FERRERO ROCHER
Share

The popular chocolate and hazelnut treats were named after the site of Marian apparitions

Within the gold foil wrapping of a Ferrero Rocher candy is multi-layered confection that seems like some kind of magic straight out of Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory: a single roasted hazelnut, encased in a wafer shell filled with hazelnut chocolate, which is itself topped with chocolate studded with chopped hazelnuts.

These magical chocolates, however, were inspired, not by Roald Dahl’s children’s book, but by the Virgin Mary herself.

When the Italian chocolatier Michele Ferrero introduced the treats in 1982, it is believed that he named them “Rocher” after the craggy rock grotto, called the Rocher de Massabielle, that marks the place where the Blessed Mother appeared to St. Bernadette in Lourdes, France.

Wikipedia

The chocolates’ hazelnut-pocked surface bears more than a passing resemblance to the rock formation at Lourdes, a place that had a special meaning for Ferrero, who died on Valentine’s Day in 2015 at the age of 89.

FERRERO ROCHER

A devout Catholic, Ferrero was known for his strong devotion to Our Lady. At the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of his company, he said: “The success of Ferrero we owe to Our Lady of Lourdes; without her we can do little.”

As the third largest chocolate producer in the world, Ferrero had a lot to be thankful for. The Ferrero Rocher candies, along with Nutella, Kinder treats and Tic Tacs, brought in over $10 billion Euros in 2016.

Ferrero was said to have made an annual pilgrimage to Lourdes, taking his top manager. He also organized a visit to the shrine for his employees, and had a statue of the Virgin Mary placed in each of his company’s 14 production facilities around the world.

 

 

 

Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.
Aleteia offers you this space to comment on articles. This space should always reflect Aleteia values.
[See Comment Policy]
Readers like you contribute to Aleteia's Mission.

Since our inception in 2012, Aleteia’s readership has grown rapidly worldwide. Our team is committed to a mission of providing articles that enrich, inspire and inform a Catholic life. That's why we want our articles to be freely accessible to everyone, but we need your help to do that. Quality journalism has a cost (more than selling ads on Aleteia can cover). That's why readers like you make a major difference by donating as little as $3 a month.