The openly gay pastor who ignited a firestorm when he sued Whole Foods over the claim that one of the supermarket chain’s stores sold him a cake with an anti-gay slur on it has officially dropped his lawsuit and apologized.
“Today I am dismissing my lawsuit against Whole Foods Market. The company did nothing wrong,” Pastor Jordan Brown said in a statement. “I was wrong to pursue this matter and use the media to perpetuate this story.”
He continued, “I want to apologize to Whole Foods and its team members for questioning the company’s commitment to its values, and especially the bakery associate who I understand was put in a terrible position because of my actions.”
Brown, who is gay and pastors at Open Doors in Austin, Texas, went on to apologize to the LGBTQ community for “diverting attention from real issues,” while also offering up apologies to his parter, his family, his lawyer and his church.
Brown’s initial legal battle began after he alleged last month that he ordered a cake from a local Whole Foods with the words “Love Wins” on it, but said that the final product ended up reading, “Love Wins Fag.”
Brown decided to take action, turning to the Kaplan Law Firm in Austin to bring his grievance to the courts, with a press release from the pastor’s attorney and an accompanying video featuring the cake in question quickly gaining widespread attention.
Whole Foods immediately spoke out against the claim and issued a detailed rebuke, wasting no time in announcing that the company would countersue both Brown and his lawyer.
“Mr. Brown admits that he was in sole possession and control of the cake until he posted his video, which showed the UPC label on the bottom and side of the box,” read a statement from the company. “After reviewing our security footage of Mr. Brown, it’s clear that the UPC label was in fact on top of the cake box, not on the side of the package. This is evident as the cashier scans the UPC code on top of the box.”
The company published the security footage that purportedly shows the location of the UPC label, though it is difficult to see specific details.
Watch it below:
In his initial video making his cake claim, Brown maintained that he had not opened the cake after buying it, saying, ”It’s still sealed. I have not opened this box yet. … This is discrimination.”
Whole Foods responded to Brown’s apology on Monday by announcing that it will also drop its countersuit in light of the pastor’s apology, saying that the company is “pleased that the truth has come to light.”
“Given Mr. Brown’s apology and public admission that his story was a complete fabrication, we see no reason to move forward with our counter suit to defend the integrity of our brand and team members,” the statement read.
It should also be noted that not long after the cake battle initially made headlines last month, reports claimed that Brown was himself sued in relation to an entirely different situation just a few weeks before the cake debacle, KXAN-TV reported.