Joey Chestnut reportedly banned from 2024 Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition

Joey Chestnut’s reign of dominance at the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition will come to an end in 2024.

Chestnut has been banned from this year’s competition due to a deal representing Impossible Foods, a company that uses plant-based substitutes for meat products, the New York Post reported Tuesday

Major League Eating, which runs the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition on July 4, reportedly told the New York Post that Chestnut’s decision to endorse a different hot dog brand crossed the line after it was willing to meet his other demands.

“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 told the New York Post in a statement. 

“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.

“For nearly two decades we have worked under the same basic hot dog exclusivity provisions. However, it seems that Joey and his managers have prioritized a new partnership with a different brand over our long-time relationship.

“Joey Chestnut is an American hero. We would love nothing more than to have him at the Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest.  We hope he returns when he is not representing a rival brand.”

Chestnut received $200,000 to participate in the 2023 Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition and had a four-year, $1.2 million offer to continue to compete in the event prior to Tuesday’s news, according to the New York Post.

Chestnut has historically dominated the event, winning it 16 times. He established a rivalry with Takeru Kobayashi over the years, defeating him for the first time in 2007. Chestnut won the event eight straight times between 2007-14. After losing in 2016, Chestnut has won the event in each of the last eight years.

With his dominance at Coney Island each 4th of July, Chestnut has become an overwhelming favorite to win the event in recent years. He held at least -4000 odds to win the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition in 2023. 

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