Paula Deen Loses Major Endorsement Deal Over Ham-Handed Remarks

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Paula Deen, who was fired by Food Network Friday, saw her troubles intensify as Smithfield Foods severed its relationship with her Monday.

Smithfield, the world’s largest pork producer, was the flagship in Deen’s collection of at least 17 licensing and endorsement partnerships.

Deen has endorsed their hams and other products since 2006.

Paula Deen Image

At issue is the celebrity chef's recent admission in a lawsuit deposition that she has used racial slurs and jokes that denigrate blacks in the past.

“Smithfield condemns the use of offensive and discriminatory language and behavior of any kind,” the company said in a statement.

“Smithfield is determined to be an ethical food industry leader and it is important that our values and those of our spokespeople are properly aligned."

Deen is scrambling to cope with allegations that she and people in her restaurants have been insensitive or worse to blacks, women and other groups.

Her empire began to crumble last week after her deposition in a discrimination lawsuit filed by Lisa Jackson was leaked to the news media.

Jackson, who for several years considered herself Deen’s right hand, helped manage her restaurants and became close to the Deen inner circle.

Jackson filed the suit in March 2012, after she spent six months trying to turn around the family's Uncle Bubba’s Oyster House in Savannah, Ga.

The restaurant is run by Paula's brother, Earl W. Hiers, who is known as Bubba. Paula Deen also operates The Lady and Sons restaurant in Savannah.

At Uncle Bubba’s, the lawsuit contends, racial slurs and jokes about women, Jews and blacks were common, as were worker intimidation and porn.

Deen has claimed that Jackson was bent on revenge.

Before she filed the suit, she asked for $1.2 million, Paula's lawyers have said, and threatened to take the matter public if she was not paid.

Whatever the motivation, the bad publicity and bizarre handling of Deen's video apology statement were too much for Food Network to take.

Who knows how far her empire will topple, although a new Paula Deen Facebook fan page has been created in defense of the 66-year-old.

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i love paula and could care less what she says and what others think. black people keep using any thing possible to get something for nothing. for all the good paula has done for black people, i can't believe how so few have come to her defense. pathetic.

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@ SoReal

Blacks come to her offense? Why would they. She hired black servers because she does not think white servers should wait on black people. Her whole plantation shit she has said is a mockery. I do not watch any cooking show but I am glad she has lost a lot of indorsment especially Smithfield. Her crocodile tears with Matt show was just that a show. She said she is not going to change. She deserves everything she gets.

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Who cares... Paula is respected and rich and White... A Nigger will always be a Nigger you can't wash that off.. Racism is alive and well and bigger than ever. WATCH OUT.

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@ 1488

Look at all that 'keyboard courage'!!! And "WATCH OUT" for what? More capital letters...

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@ CURT11

AMEN. Watch out for what? A redneck will always be a redneck. Ignorant bastard. Your grandmother married her first born son and had you.

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This is what happens when you make racist comments..and it wasnt that long ago up until recently she made a racist comment but @JJ how is Kanye racist if kim is white???I havent heard Al Sharpton call a white person a Racial Slur like Paula did..All he does is fight for black rights so how does that make him racist

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@ boo

If you think because someone has a white Ho that he's not racist you are nuts. West sat there and called George Bush a racist after Katrina. Sharpton tried to frame the Duke Athletic Department. Any fool knows these 2 are racist!

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@ JJ

kanye and sharpton are definitely racist, that is obvious. funny how eddie murphy used to boast that all he dated was "chocolate" and now he has a white gf. even he learned that being married to a sista is no picnic..

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@ JJ

Lets gets a few things right JJ. Kim K is not just his "ho" anymore, she is his baby momma now. That's a whole different ball park because a new life as well as money is now involved. Some may say this baby is yet another publicity stunt but we all know neither one of them plays when it comes to money. With that being said, you are trying to imply that West either hates half of his new born baby or hates half of his new investment. Which we know is not true. So the race card does not fit too well there. As for the whole Bush/Katrina statement, he said that "Bush does not care about black people." We all saw how that whole F up went down in N.O., so it makes him racist for stating the obvious? As for Sharpton, black people do not have many voices when it comes to standing up to discrimination. Personally I think Al Sharpton is a joke most of the time and makes black people look bad by how he goes about doing things. But at least he's doing something! Plus MOST of the time he is on the correct side of history, most of the time. So don't call the man racist for trying to even out the playing field. Lets be honest, I see more people degrading black people online then any other race. The only reason you don't notice it, is because people like you are use to it or the ones doing it! Scroll up to 1488's comment for a perfect example. Other then that, have a bless day! :)

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@ CURT11

Let's do get a few things straight. As far as KK, you can dress her up in a ball gown and put her on a float but a "HO" is still a HO! Still no sale on the "He got a half white baby now". Doesn't mean a damn thing just as it didnt mean anything when he jerked the microphone out of Taylor Swifts hand so he could give a shout out to Beyaaawwwence in order to boost his career! If she were black? I think not! As far as Sharpton and his counterpart Tawana Brawley framing someone in the 80's that racism speaks for itself! Every living thing he does is aimed at whites! This is who he is. The problem thusfar is that BLACKS will not ever call out other blacks no matter what! This is why you see so much of this! Katrina had a protocol just like other natural disasters. New Orleans major said- WE GOT THIS!

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They are persecuting Paula Deen for something almost EVERYONE has done at some time in their lives. Peoples' attitudes evolve and change. IShe does not deserve this. I won't patronize the Food Network or Smithfield or any other entity that goes along with this hysteria. Team Paula!

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@ All+Eyes

The N word is one thing because its so common especially in the south. But to dream up a whole wedding with house slaves and bow ties, is a whole different twisted ball park. But that just my opinion. With that being said cant wait for dinner. We're having some Smithfield ham while we watch Chopped!!! Team Racial Equality!

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What a racial BUFFET this must be for the sheep. Southern white woman using racial slurs! Then you have Kanye West and his racism or Al Sharpton and his convictions. One day people will finally see what a travesty this is. Social crucifix of this woman will not show your intolerance to racism its show how weak you are in thinking this proves your character. Bahhhh Bahhhhh sheep.

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