Food Network will not renew Paula Deen's contract - WFLA News Channel 8

Food Network will not renew Paula Deen's contract

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NEW YORK, NY (WFLA) -

The Food Network says it will not renew the contract of celebrity chef Paula Deen, days after it was revealed she admitted using racial slurs in the past.

The network said in a news release Friday afternoon that it would not renew Deen's contract when it expires at the end of the month.

Deen has built an empire from her television shows, cookbooks and product endorsements. The Food Network began airing "Paula's Home Cooking" in 2002 and added "Paula's Best Dishes" in 2008.

Deen admitted while being questioned as part of a lawsuit that she had used racial slurs in the past. The network's announcement came just hours after she posted a video online apologizing for her past mistakes. 

"I want to apologize to everybody for the wrong that I have done," Deen said.

The visibly upset Deen went on to say "I beg for your forgiveness...please forgive me for the mistakes that I've made," she said.

Deen said "inappropriate, hurtful language is totally, totally unacceptable." 

The statement comes hours after Deen was a no-show at the "Today" show, where she was scheduled to appear to answer questions about past use of racial slurs.  

"Today" host Matt Lauer told viewers he had spoken with Deen the day before to arrange what NBC had promoted as an exclusive, live appearance.    

But shortly before the show went on the air Friday, Lauer said he was told by a Deen representative that she was pulling out. 

While questioned last month in a discrimination lawsuit, the 66-year-old Food Network star admitted to having used racial slurs in the past, but insisted she and her family do not tolerate prejudice. 

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