Richard Ferraro says one of the most important things to come out of this Barilla controversy is the signal of how American culture has changed.
"The overall reaction to this shows that anti-gay attitudes are bad for business," he says, and that those sorts of comments will anger not only gays but "our friends, our families, our co-workers."
Recognition that anti-gay policies can harm the bottom line isn't limited to the pasta industry.
The Exxon Mobile company, after more than a decade of refusing to offer benefits to the spouses or partners of its U.S. gay and lesbian employees, changed its policy on Friday. It joins a number of other major international corporations that have switched into pro-gay mode in the last few years.
"I'm glad that Mr. Barilla is going to sit down with LGBT families and I would be happy to speak with him about how being gay does not make my son any less than his brothers," Linda Ferraro says.
"Hopefully we were able to open up dialogue for another family and reach other moms with a message that they should love their children no matter what. For me a family is about people who care for each no matter what happens," she says.
Her son Richard says he's been "incredibly lucky to have had a family that supported me ever since I came out as a teenager." He says the very traditional Italian message his mom always taught him was that "the family comes first, that the family matters most."
In Richard Ferraro's eyes, Barilla's agreement to sit down to talk with Italian gay and lesbian activists shouldn't be the end of the story. "It's a first step," he says. "He should also think about protecting his LGBT employees."
As far as the Barilla boycott goes, Richard Ferraro and his mom still plan to buy someone else's pasta.
"Consumers should support companies that support them," he says.