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Joey Chestnut banned from 2024 Nathan's hot dog eating contest over partnership with vegan wiener company

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Joey Chestnut's reign looks like it will be on a brief hold.

The 16-time Nathan's hot dog eating contest champion is reportedly barred from competing in this year's event.

Chestnut recently signed a deal with Impossible Foods, a rival of Nathan's that has launched a vegan wiener, the New York Post reported.

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Joey Chestnut competes in the Nathan's Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest in Coney Island July 4, 2012, in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

"We are devastated to learn that Joey Chestnut has chosen to represent a rival brand that sells plant-based hot dogs rather than competing in the 2024 Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest," Major League Eating (MLE) said in a statement."

MLE said it allowed Chestnut to participate in a rival competition on Labor Day, which will be broadcast on Netflix. Chestnut is reported to have made $200,000 for appearing in last year's contest and was offered a four-year, $1.2 million deal.

Instead, Chestnut will be promoting a rival.

"MLE and Nathan’s went to great lengths to accommodate Joey and his management team, agreeing to the appearance fee and allowing Joey to compete in a rival, unbranded hot dog eating contest on Labor Day," the league continued.

Competitive eater Joey Chestnut holds a plate of hot dogs representing his world record for eating 76 hot dogs and buns in ten minutes during a weigh-in ceremony before Nathan's July Fourth hot dog eating contest July 3, 2023, in New York.  (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

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