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Two Networks Declare Food Fight

It looks like there’s a food fight brewing between Food Network and Bravo over Bravo’s new chef reality show.

Flash! hears that Food Network rejected national and online ads for Bravo’s upcoming kitchen showdown, Top Chef, which is set to debut March 8 with Katie Lee Joel (Billy’s bride) as host.

It’s not uncommon for networks to run ads for their competition; CNN routinely carries spots promoting other cable news networks.

Indeed, while Bravo hasn’t advertised nationally on Food Network for years, Food has bought spots on Bravo.

A Bravo spokesperson says, “It’s surprising they should feel so threatened by a show that’s yet to launch. We’re flattered.”

So, what gives? Are the folks at Food Network chicken?

“Our networks do accept advertisements from other media companies,” says a Food Network spokesman in an e-mail to Flash!. “But just as other networks have filters for accepting placements from other media, we have a set of criteria that determines what we do and do not accept on our air. This ad did not meet [our] criteria.”

Perhaps it’s just a matter of taste.