Italians flock to online campaign to save flood-stricken pasta maker


A grassroots online campaign to rescue a pasta maker whose factory was badly damaged by floods last week has become an internet sensation in Italy, having drawn Monday almost 90,000 messages of support in little more than 24 hours.

Family-run Rummo has been in business since 1846, and is considered one of Italy’s finest pasta makers. But its headquarters in Benevento, an hour’s drive north-east of Naples, were ravaged by torrential rains on October 14-15.

In response, the #SaveRummo Facebook event was created Sunday, urging people to buy Rummo products and post pictures of them on social media. Its creator, 25-year-old Luciano Lobosco, says he acted spontaneously after hearing about the flood damage in the media.

Several high-profile figures, including politicians and chefs, joined the campaign, as well as Italian expatriates in northern Europe, the Americas and Asia.

The company was not available to comment, as its phone lines appeared to be down. A source close to the Rummo family said they were busy assessing the damage and had not yet had the time to react to the messages of solidarity.

The situation remains critical in Benevento: following a new weather alert issued Sunday, schools were ordered shut and the city’s industrial area, which comprises the Rummo factory and employs 1,500 people, were evacuated.