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Founder's use of 'N-word' leaves Papa John's in turmoil

The Minnesota Twins are among the organizations cutting ties with the pizza chain.

It's not been a good week for Papa John's, which remains in crisis-mode after it emerged its founder had used the "N-word" on a conference call in May.

The face of John Schnatter is being removed from Papa John's logo and marketing materials after his use of the racist slur.

Organizations that partner with Papa John's have started dropping him, among them several MLB teams including the Minnesota Twins.

CityPages reports that the Twins have suspended the chain from Target Field, and will be replacing its two concessions spaces at the stadium.

His offensive remark was made during a role-playing exercise to ward against future PR mistakes such as last November, when Schnatter said the NFL anthem protests against police brutality were hurting pizza sales.

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When the Papa John's founder was asked how he would distance himself from racist groups online, Forbes reports he responded by downplaying the significance of his NFL statement, before saying: "Colonel Sanders called blacks [n-word]."

Schnatter has resigned as the Papa John's board chairman, seven months after he stepped down as CEO following the NFL debacle and amid slumping sales.

In a message to customers on Friday, new company CEO Steve Ritchie said: "Racism and any insensitive language, no matter what the context simply cannot – and will not – be tolerated at any level of our company."

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