Eataly is distancing itself from the chef who was accused of sexual harassment.

By Mahita Gajanan
December 13, 2017
Mario Batali, pictured at Eataly's Boston opening in November 2016, is having his face removed from the restaurant and market's food products in the wake of sexual harassment allegations.
Lane Turner/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Italian food giant Eataly has distanced itself from Mario Batali by dropping products with the chef’s likeness from its shelves.

Batali, whose products at Eataly included pasta, sauces, olive oils and books, was accused of sexual harassment this week by four women who told Eater that the chef touched them inappropriately. A spokesperson for Eataly said the company has removed the products as part of a move to end active involvement with Batali.

"The allegations that surfaced on Monday morning concerning Mario Batali’s behavior towards women were extremely troubling to us. We fully support Mr. Batali’s decision to step away from any active involvement with Eataly,” said Eataly in a statement. "Sexual harassment of any kind towards anyone in any form is unacceptable and Eataly cares deeply about creating a safe and comfortable environment for all our employees and customers, free of harassment, discrimination and retaliation."

The allegations against Batali have had an immediate effect on his business ties. The chef said he would step away from daily operations of his business, Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group, and was asked by ABC to step down from food show The Chew. A spokesperson for Batali did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In a statement to Eater, Batali acknowledged that the actions described by the women in the report “match up with ways I have acted.”

“That behavior was wrong and there are no excuses,” he said. “I take full responsibility and am deeply sorry for any pain, humiliation or discomfort I have caused to my peers, employees, customers, friends and family.”

Eataly, which plans to file for an IPO on the Italian Stock Exchange, has stores located throughout the world and recently opened a food theme park in Bologna to educate people on Italian food.

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