Paula Deen Dropped by Target, Home Depot, Diabetes Drug Maker Novo Nordisk Suspends Deal Amid Racial Slur Scandal
The hits just keep coming. Less than 24 hours after being dropped by both Walmart and Caesars amid the fallout from her racial slur scandal, Paula Deen has parted ways with retail giant Home Depot and suspended activities with diabetes drug maker Novo Nordisk, Us Weekly can confirm.
UPDATE: Target has joined the list, too. A spokesperson for the company tells Us: "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."
Earlier on Thursday, June 27, a rep for Novo Nordisk told Us that the pharmaceutical company had come to a mutual agreement with the beleaguered 66-year-old chef to "suspend" the partnership "while she takes time to focus her attention where it is needed." Once famous for her high-calorie Southern recipes, Deen -- who has type 2 diabetes -- first signed on as a spokesperson for the brand's drug Victoza in early 2012; she helped promote patient education via an initiative called Diabetes in a New Light.
Home Depot, meanwhile, said Wednesday that it would stop carrying Paula Deen-branded items in its kitchen and cookware departments. The news followed a similar announcement from Walmart earlier that afternoon.
"We are ending our relationship with Paula Deen Enterprises and we will not place new orders beyond those already committed," Walmart spokesperson Danit Marquardt told Us Weekly of the decision.
Deen's endorsement deals have been quickly dwindling ever since it was revealed last week that she had admitted in a deposition to using the N-word in the past. In the wake of that scandal, the chef was fired by both Food Network and Smithfield Foods -- and other companies have been following suit almost every day since.
On Wednesday, June 26, Deen attempted to clear her name with an interview on the TODAY show. During her nearly 14-minute sit-down with Matt Lauer, she broke down in tears and tried to defend her character against allegations that she is racist.
"If there's anyone out there that has never said something that they wish they could take back -- if you're out there, please pick up that stone and throw it so hard at my head that it kills me," she said through sobs. "Please, I want to meet you...I is what I is, and I'm not changing."