Paula Deen Accused of Using Child Labor, Unsafe Working Conditions to Make Lifestyle Products

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Paula Deen, the Butter Queen, is making headlines once again as reports that the factories she used to manufacture her lifestyle products were notorious for child labor violations and hazardous and deadly working conditions. reports that it has "uncovered Deen's extensive history of partnering with companies that can make her rich, no matter the cost to their workers."

With Deen netting over $17 million last year and being the 4th highest paid celebrity chef, it seems like perhaps they're not wrong.

In recent months, Paula Deen has weathered allegations of racism, been dropped by all of her sponsors, and fired from the Food Network which helped make her a household name in the first place. 

Is she gearing up for another battle over the factories where her products are made? Maybe.

The article reports that in some of the factories in India where Paula Deen's products are made, employees are paid only $75 a month and that, after seven years in the same factory, some workers have only seen an $8 raise.

Other factories have had major safety violations, such as the one which was gutted by a fire earlier this year. The glass factories where her candles are produced are notorious for their shady child labor practices because the regulations against employing children aren't well-implemented or enforced.

But her problems aren't just aboard. She signed on to be the face of Smithfield in 2006, shortly after they were criticized in a well-publicized report by the Human Rights Watch which alleged that conditions there were so dangerous, employees were actually dying because of them.

Glen Birdsong, 25, died from inhaling toxic sodium bisulfate fumes in one of Smithfield's tanks and workers repeatedly stabbed and injured themselves with the dull knives used to ready Smithfield's pork products for packaging. Deen, however, proclaimed Smithfield a "good company" and commented that the people there "are so happy to have jobs."

Despite her fall from grace in 2013, Paula Deen is preparing to open the first Paula Deen Foods store in Buffalo, N.Y. next February. 

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I got as far as the third sentence in this article before realizing it is just another vilify-the-rich-and-successful piece. Disgusting. Interesting timing, too. Just as Ms. Deen is about to open a new store. Better jump on that quick and keep her beat down.


Seriously, it truly amazes me that you actually think you are a reporter. We no longer have ethical journalism in this country. It is all about smear campaigns. I got new for you, all of the Food Network stars have skeletons in their closet. Rachael Ray's products are made by the same damn company so are many of the other products of Food Network Stars. I no longer watch Food Network and after this blatant pack of lies I will be unsubscribing to your so called news outlet as well. Perhaps you should revisit the code of ethics for journalism, if you ever read them at all.


Why not report on all the children that are getting killed in our cities. This is bs reporting. Go get a real job


You have no better news to report than trash like this. Report all celebrities that have products made there. How about Disney, toys that will be made this Christmas, clothes made by very famous people of all races. Reporting is supposed to be for telling the truth to people that do not know it not just your version of it. You are guilty of more so than Paula Deen. Reporting partial rather whole for your own personal gain makes you guilty of the same.


Why didn't you name ALL the chefs on Food Network?????? Their products are made the same way!!!! What kind of reporting is this???


There will always be people who pick themselves up by the bootstraps and make something special of their lives and, sadly , those who don't but instead dedicate themselves to bringing down the worlds achievers . Paula Deen has not had an easy life and yet she's not sitting at home on welfare and watching Oprah. She has worked hard for every one of her numerous accomplishments.I sincerely hope she doesn't capitulate to the thought police and stays her perky and quirky self! I, for one will drive out to buffalo to visit her new store when it opens.

@ Susanacknair

Good for you....and well said!


Well Alice Walton - Walmart heir ran over and killed someone and been arrested for Drinking and Driving numerous times, and Walmart is still thriving so Paula should be too.


Before you get all hot and bothered and drag Paula into another mess let me remind you that Philip Morris; Walmart, Victoria's Secret and others use other countries to make their products; many of which use child labor. These companies use them because these kids NEED to support their families and if they used only American labor; you'd not be able to afford the price. GET OVER YOURSELF!


The same company makes Rachel Rays products yet she is not being attacked.


This woman is white and from the south AND THAT'S WTF THIS IS ALL ABOUT! BLACK WITCHES LIKE OPRAH SAY THAT OLDER WHITES FROM THE SOUTH ......JUST NEED TO DIE- that black bitch remains untouched! There is much racism today and it's against whites in the SOUTH! No 2 ways about it.