Paula Deen Drama: Novo Nordisk, Target Cut Ties; Martha Stewart Weighs In
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Looks like Paula Deen is losing out on even more partnerships: Target and Novo Nordisk have become the latest companies to publicly end their relationships with Paula Deen.
Since a deposition leaked last week revealing Paula Deen admitting to using the "N" word and making "racial slurs," Food Network, Smithfield Foods, Caesars, Walmart, and more companies have dropped the celebrity chef.
Wednesday, Home Depot confirmed to NBC News that they have decided to stop carrying the Deen-branded cookware after Deen appeared on the TODAY show Wednesday morning.
Meanwhile, Thursday brought the more surprising announcement that Novo Nordisk was suspending Deen's diabetes campaign; the pharmaceutical company had initially stated they would keep her on as a spokeperson, having partnered with Deen for the diabetes drug Victoza after Deen announced her diagnosis with type 2 diabetes.
Today, the company issued a statement saying they, along with Deen, "have mutually agreed to suspend our patient education activities for now, while she takes time to focus her attention where it is needed. Novo Nordisk would like to acknowledge Paula’s involvement in our Diabetes in a New Light™ campaign, where she has helped make many people aware of type 2 diabetes and the lifestyle changes needed to control this serious disease."
Meanwhile, Target has also announced that it will not be replenishing their inventory with Paula Deen merchandise, TODAY reports. "We have made a decision to phase out the Paula Deen merchandise in our stores as well as on Target.com. Once the merchandise is sold out, we will not be replenishing inventory," the company said in a statement.
No word on whether any of these partnerships will strike up once Paula Deen's reputation stabilizes post-scandal, but Novo Nordisk's Ken Ichausti says they may strike up the deal "once she's regained the trust of her audience," Forbes reports. "It does leave us with an option," said Inchausti, "but she needs to focus on rebuilding her relationship with the public."
Meanwhile, Deen has at least one supporter in the Sandridge Food Corp. in Ohio, who released a statement saying the maker of prepared foods is "proud to provide unwavering support for Paula Deen." But Martha Stewart? She doesn't think Deen will be able to live this down. "I don't want to say whether I agree or not. I just feel you have to really watch yourself especially, especially in this day and age with cameras all over you and Google," the media mogul told Andy Cohen last night on Watch What Happens Live. "What I just said. ... It'll be there forever."
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