The Whole Pantry, the successful healthy eating and lifestyle app by young Melbourne entrepreneur Belle Gibson, has been pulled from Apple‘s US and Australian stores, as allegations of fraud surround its creator.
Over the past several weeks, reports have been circulating that Gibson failed to hand over money solicited in the name of various charities, and questions have been raised about the legitimacy of her cancer survival story.
Last year, Gibson claimed that she had given $300,000 to various causes, but she has since gone back on that claim, saying that the donations were not made because sales of the app were not as high as forecast.
On Monday of this week, under growing pressure, publisher Penguin announced that Gibson’s cookbook would be pulled from sale in Australia, while her US publisher Atria Books have cancelled next month’s release.
Per reports today in Fairfax, The Whole Pantry disappeared from sale on the US and Australian app stores overnight, although it’s unclear whether Gibson was behind this, or Apple themselves.
The Whole Pantry has been featured as a key app in promotions for Apple’s soon-to-be-released watch, but a key announcement, which was due to happen at last week’s launch, did not go ahead.
Gibson’s Instagram account was completely wiped of posts earlier this week, while her popular Whole Pantry Facebook page has been disabled, following an influx of negative comments.
The young entrepreneur launched the app based on her own story as a young mother diagnosed with brain cancer, who rejected conventional medicine to instead heal herself with a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Penguin admitted that they did not fact check the health claims that Gibson made in the preface to her book, and there is a growing call for refunds from those who purchased both the book and app.
Apple have yet to comment on the status of The Whole Pantry on their watches.
Image via Simon & Schuster