Italian pasta company in hot water over colonial brand

Pasta company apologises and pledges to rename its 'Abyssinian rigatoni.'

La Molisana, one of Italy's biggest pasta producers, has found itself trending on Twitter today for appearing to celebrate Italy's colonial past in northeast Africa.

The company's new 'Abyssinian rigatoni,' a reference to Italy's colonial campaigns in the 1930s, has caused a storm of protest on social media.

La Molisana has issued an apology for what it termed an "unacceptable" way to recall a "dramatic page of history."

The company's marketing initiative referred to Italy "celebrating the season of colonialism" in the 1930s with new pasta shapes such as "Abissine, Tripoline, Bengasine and Assabesi."

The firm said it would rebrand the pasta and remove any reference to Italy's colonial campaigns in Africa.

Based in Campobasso, La Molisana was founded in 1912 and produces around 470 tons of pasta per day.