FoodFood to launch on 24 January; channel priced at Rs 18

FoodFood to launch on 24 January; channel priced at Rs 18

MUMBAI: The appetite for food channels is on the rise in India as the digital market offers space for the speciality genre.


Soon after Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (Zeel) launched its food channel on 8 December with Khana Khazana as its prime property, the architect of that show Sanjeev Kapoor has gone ahead to set up his own with Malaysia‘s Astro as the majority partner.


FoodFood will launch on 24 January at 2 pm and is priced at Rs 18.


The channel has roped in Bollywood actress Madhuri Dixit Nene as its lifestyle ambassador.


A complete HD channel, FoodFood comes with a tagline ‘Khushi ki Recipe‘ (Reciepe of Happiness). It will be a predominantly Hindi channel, targeting females in the 25+ demographics from middle class families in urban towns of the Hindi speaking markets.


The channel, to be distributed on its own, is in talks with cable and direct-to-home (DTH) players for carriage.


?We are in talks with different MSOs and DTH players. We are confident that by the time of launch, the channel will be available in 70 per cent of the HSM. We are not part of any distribution bouquet as of now. We will look into that if the terms are commercially viable,? FoodFood COO Karthik Lakshminarayan told indiantelevision.com. 


Accepting that the pricing of the channel is aggressive, Lakshminarayan said it "seemed right for the kind of content that it is offering."


Initially, the channel will have four-hours of original programming daily.


Lakshminarayan said that the shows will be produced and packaged in India, thus making the content relevant to the Indian audience.


The channel will air no dubbed content and will have shows about food and food lifestyle. Among these shows are Firangi Tadka (produced by BBC Worldwide Productions India), Chef Se Hai Muquabla and Ready Steady Cook (Endemol India), Sirf 30 Minute and Sanjeev Kapoor?s Kitchen among others.


FoodFood is a joint venture between Astro and Turmeric Vision (TVPL), the television company owned by Sanjeev Kapoor and wife Alyona Kapoor. The company is looking at FoodFood as the most "gastronomically loaded lifestyle" and entertainment concept available across TV, mobile and web.


Kapoor said during the launch conference that the idea of launching a food channel came to him seven years back (he was doing Khana Khazana for Zee TV at that time), but it took him five years to find a partner like Astro.


The food speciality genre will have a third player in Alva Brothers. The company is planning to launch a food and lifestyle channel titled Food First later this year. Food First will be a part of Real Lifestyle Network and will target upwardly mobile English speaking, 18+, male and female audiences.


On the question of three players in the same category, Abraham Thomas, who has been consulting the company and has set up the channel, said: ?The coming of more channels is an indication that the genre has potential.?


Astro Group Director of India and South Asia for Media Raghvendra Madhav said, ?Sanjeev Kapoor is not only a great chef but is also India?s original and most trusted chef. He brings to the table a deep understanding of food and how it works on TV. We are also delighted to announce the involvement of Madhuri Dixit Nene who epitomizes Indian womanhood. Being a foodie herself, she brings to the brand a lifestyle perspective.?


FoodFood co-promoter Sanjeev Kapoor said, ?Today food has acquired dimensions that go beyond mere consumption. As our country breaks new ground in almost every field, food is rapidly becoming central to our lives. Its not only about calories and taste, it?s about having fun, enjoying life with food around which the family & friends gather. Through Food Food, we hope to create a medium that will celebrate food in its entire splendor across multi platforms. This TV channel is just one among many platforms to follow.?


Madhuri Dixit Nene added, "I am extremely excited with the concept and thought behind FoodFood. Being part of the launch of a brand solely dedicated to this gastronomical cum lifestyle concept, gives me immense pleasure. I am looking forward to contributing as its lifestyle ambassador.?


Lakshminarayan  claims that FoodFood will break away from just ‘stir-and-cook‘ type shows. It will have shows that will see lifestyle shows, travelogues, reality shows, film-based shows game shows etc, but all with the central theme of food.


The channel will have a resident food editor - chef Rakesh Sethi, who comes with over 28 years of experience across Taj SATS, Oberoi and Intercontinental hotels. It also has other Indian celebrity chefs (Nitin Tandon, Shantanu Gupte and Anurag Bali).


Ogilvy India has the creative mandate of the channel while Motivator is the media AoR.

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