Paula Deen and QVC have decided to take some time off in their relationship.
While QVC stopped short of becoming the latest Deen business partner to abandon the beleaguered celebrity chef after news broke last week that she had used the N-word, QVC president and CEO Mike George revealed that his company and Deen have decided to "take a pause" from each other in light of the recent developments.
In a letter to QVC customers posted on the QVC.com Community Pages, George said that Deen won't be appearing on QVC -- nor will her products -- for the next few months while Deen handles the blossoming scandal over her use of the racial epithet.
"For now, we have decided to take a pause," George wrote. "Paula won't be appearing on any upcoming broadcasts and we will phase out her product assortment on our online sales channels over the next few months. We all think it's important, at this moment, for Paula to concentrate on responding to the allegations against her and on her path forward."
Despite that, George said that intends to treat Deen "with dignity and respect."
"We too are troubled by what Paula has acknowledged saying," George's letter reads. "We're also troubled by the allegations against her. We deeply believe, as you do, that everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect."
"As you know, I have some important things to work on right now, both personally and professionally. And so we've agreed that it's best for me to step back from QVC and focus on setting things right," Deen added in her own letter to QVC customers. "I am truly sorry and assure you I will work hard to earn your forgiveness."