CLARENCE, N.Y. (WIVB) – Celebrity chef Paula Deen celebrated the grand opening of her retail headquarters on Main Street in Clarence Saturday.
It will house the Paula Deen Food offices and a store for people to purchase everything from cookware and seasonings to baking mixes and chocolate. The chocolate is made from Landies Candies Company in Buffalo.
Since Deen was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, she said creating a sugar free chocolate was important to her. “I loved my sweets, but I really had to start thinking about that sugar content. I was blown away that a sugar free chocolate could be so delicious,” said Deen.
Deen partnered with a local company, the Nanula family’s Nanco group to develop an array of products.
“We’re a Western New York family and a lot of our accounting department was here and some of the backend stuff that we need to support a national company. So we felt that we needed to have that in our hometown,” said Steve Nanula, President and CEO of Paula Deen Foods.
Nanula said the goal is to have Paula Deen products on store shelves across the nation by next year.
Deen came under fire last year after a racial discrimination lawsuit was filed against her. The former Food Network star admitted to using the n-word and has insisted that she doesn’t tolerate prejudice. The lawsuit against her was dismissed last summer. Now Deen is starting a new chapter and she thanked the Nanula family for standing by her side.
“I’m so grateful for the love that they have for me, the belief that they have in me, and for knowing who I really am,” said Deen.