Chop, shop: The Guardian partners Ocado for weekly recipe experience

Each recipe in Feast magazine will carry a QR code enabling readers to shop for ingredients via a direct link from the page to the website.

Guardian: partnership will make recipe shopping convenient for readers thanks to use of QR codes
Guardian: partnership will make recipe shopping convenient for readers thanks to use of QR codes

Recipe choosing in The Guardian will be that little bit more convenient, thanks to its new partnership with Ocado. 

Launching in print on 3 July, every recipe in the paper's Saturday food magazine Feast will carry a unique QR code enabling readers to shop for ingredients direct from the page to the website. For online readers, a simple click will take them straight through via a special link, with the first piece going live on July 2.

It sounds so simple but what of the dreaded "substitutions" that can occur when something has sold out? What use will a bag of organic swede be when the recipe clearly calls for carrots? 

Adam Foley, director of advertising at Guardian News & Media and Imogen Fox, executive editor, assured Campaign there will be no useless substitutions adding that they had been testing the system at a granular level for the past year to troubleshoot issues such as this. 

Fox said: “We won’t alter what our chefs want, they spend a lot of time in their kitchens, making sure the recipes are just right. If it’s a reasonable substitution, we’ll consider it but if not, it will just be impractical. 

“Sometimes things are just out of stock but we’ve been through this a few times to make sure it can be as seamless as possible.”

Foley added: "We did have one poor guy look up every recipe from the last year and see if he could buy all the ingredients on Ocado. The only thing that we weren't sure about was whether saffron threads could be substituted for saffron but we got there in the end, so we are confident readers will be able to get everything they need." 

The QR shopping lists can also be edited, so you won't end up doubling up on cupboard staples that you may already have. 

Brokered by Hearts & Science, the multichannel, year-long deal is part of the new “There’s an Ocado just for you” campaign. 

Ocado will own all the ad inventory in Feast, both in print and online, throughout the year and will include special paid content features exploring the diverse range of food culture in Britain, from Easter to Eid. 

All branded content will be clearly labelled in line with The Guardian’s content funding guidelines.

Laura Harricks, chief customer officer, Ocado Retail, said: "Our customers love exploring new ingredients and recipes to cook, that’s why we're hugely excited to be partnering with The Guardian for a first-of-its-kind media partnership, which will bring recipes to life in a unique and easy way." 

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