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Aussie celebrity chef ditched after posting Nazi symbol

Australian celebrity chef and conspiracy theorist Pete Evans was ditched by several companies and had his books pulled from shelves Tuesday after he posted a Nazi symbol to social media.

Major Australian retailers said they would remove Evans' books and products from stores following a public backlash over his Instagram post that included a "Black Sun" symbol, an image associated with Nazi Germany and used by neo-Nazis.

Publisher Pan MacMillan was among those publicly distancing themselves from Evans, telling retailers they could return his books.

Kitchenware brand Baccarat said it would stop producing and selling a line of products carrying his name.

"In our view, the images and views expressed by Mr Evans are abhorrent, unacceptable, and deeply offensive," Baccarat Australia said in a statement.

His upcoming appearance on Australia's I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here reality television show was also reportedly canceled.

The since-deleted post features an image of a caterpillar wearing a "Make America Great Again" cap speaking with a butterfly that has the "Black Sun" symbol on its wing.

In a later video to his 1.7 million social media followers, Evans – stroking a horse as meditative music played in the background – said allegations made against him were "untrue, unfactual, and a load of garbage."

He also claimed he had to "Google what neo-Nazi meant."

Since the coronavirus pandemic began, Evans has routinely used his platform to promote conspiracy theories about the outbreak.

He is also known for promoting pseudoscientific dieting ideas such as the paleolithic diet, earning him the nickname "Paleo" Pete. – Rappler.com