Pete Evans’ absence from Plate of Origin explained

Is this the reason he didn’t team up with his MKR co-star Manu for the new show?
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They sat side by side as the superstar chefs-turned-judges on former ratings juggernaut My Kitchen Rules.

But Pete Evans is noticeably absent on Manu Feildel’s new show Plate of Origin, with the French chef instead matched with ousted MasterChef judges Matt Preston and Gary Mehigan.

WATCH: Pete Evans makes bizarre claim that $15k lamp could “treat coronavirus”

Controversial ex-MasterChef judge George Calombaris is also no where to be seen, so surely it’s no coincidence Pete, who is arguably just as controversial, wasn’t picked up for the series.

So what exactly did Pete do to cause backlash and why wasn’t he involved in the show? Below, New Idea shares the low-down.

Plate Of Origin
Plate of Origin features Gary Mehigan (left), Manu Feildel (centre) and Matt Preston (right) – but Pete Evans is nowhere to be seen. (Credit: Channel Seven)

Why is Manu Feildel no longer on My Kitchen Rules?

My Kitchen Rules was a huge hit for Channel Seven, and dominated the ratings for much of its decade-long run – particularly at the beginning.

Celebrity chefs Pete and Manu were at the helm and became household names in Australia thanks to the success of show. Recurring judge (and later, a permanent fixture) Colin Fassnidge also enjoyed a profile boost thanks to his involvement.

However, as the show wore on, ratings began to slide, leading to Channel Seven to press the pause button on the reality favourite.

My Kitchen Rules
MKR made household names out of Manu Feildel (left) and Pete Evans (right). (Credit: Channel Seven)

Even Manu himself admitted viewers were exhausted by the format.

“We’ve been on air for 11 years,” he explained to Now To Love in March. “There are other shows on other networks that people prefer to watch, that’s just the way it is.”

Colin also weighed in on the plummeting ratings on 2GB’s The Chris Smith Show.

“Not everyone’s watching it at the moment because we’ve got some people in Channel Seven who don’t know how to program a show,” he said.

“But what do I know? I’m only a cook!”

Pete Evans Manu Feildel
“There are other shows on other networks that people prefer to watch,” Manu admitted viewers had become tired of MKR’s format after 11 years. (Credit: Instagram)

Why is Pete Evans controversial?

Pete has received backlash over the years for being outspoken on a range of health topics that he isn’t qualified to give advice on and could be deemed dangerous.

In recent weeks, he regularly makes headlines for claiming the coronavirus pandemic is a “scam” and sharing conspiracy theories.

Earlier this year he promoted a “BioCharger” device, which he falsely claimed could be used in relation to the “Wuhan Coronavirus.” When the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) caught wind of this, Pete was fined $25,200 for two breaches of the Therapeutic Goods Act.

In 2015, he faced backlash for co-authoring a baby paleo cook, which was pulled from shelves following concerns from health groups that some of its recipes are potentially risky for babies.

Other false health claims Pete has made in the past includes his stance that drinking fluoridated water during pregnancy lowers the baby’s IQ, as well as the time he advocated against using sunscreen due to its “poisonous chemicals”. He is also a vocal anti-vaxxer.

Pete Manu
Pete (right) has come under fire for his various false claims about health issues. (Credit: Channel Seven)

Why isn’t Pete Evans part of Plate of Origin?

When MKR was finally shelved after its dire ratings in 2020, Channel Seven cut ties with the show’s long-time judge Pete.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported in May that the network decided to give Pete and his $800,000 contract the chop as a cost-cutting measure. 

Manu Pete MKR
Channel Seven cut ties with Pete in May after MKR was “rested”, with insiders saying it was an “amicable” ending. (Credit: Channel Seven)

According to the publication’s sources, Pete was said to be pursuing “his own endeavours”, with the insider insisted the parting was “amicable”.

Meanwhile, Channel Seven announced at their Upfronts event last October that Manu would join Gary and Matt for a new cooking show, but made no mention of Pete.

The appointment meant that while MKR’s “resting” spelled the end for Pete, Manu still had a high-profile gig at the network.

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