Jamie Oliver is the new face of Tesco

New partnership follows difficult year for the TV chef, whose restaurant chains have been rocked by financial problems

Caitlin Morrison
Monday 10 September 2018 09:30
Jamie Oliver and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall call for childhood obesity action

Jamie Oliver has signed up with Tesco in a partnership aimed at promoting healthier options for shoppers, seven years after the TV chef’s deal with Sainsbury’s came to an end.

Oliver will begin his new promotional campaign with “helpful little swaps”, which will offer healthier and cheaper alternatives to customers.

Tesco said a basket of “swaps”, which will include products with reduced levels of sugar, salt and fat, will cost 12 per cent less than a regular basket.

Tesco said the partnership followed a survey of 2,000 people that revealed 70 per cent of people think supermarkets should do more to help people make healthier choices.

“These survey results back up what I hear from my audience every single day – Britain wants to know how to enjoy more of the good stuff, in easy, fun and delicious ways,” said Oliver.

“This makes this partnership one of the most exciting opportunities to actually get Britain eating and celebrating more of their five fruit and veg a day.

“I’m going to work really hard to respond to the different seasons and what the customer is asking for, by creating exciting meals, shortcuts and tips that get people really fired up to cook. Tesco’s part is to make it easier and more affordable.”

Alessandra Bellini, chief customer officer for Tesco, said: “Jamie’s passion and skill to inspire a nation to cook, coupled with our experience and reach in providing millions of customers and colleagues with healthy, quality, affordable ingredients will be a great combination to help people take simple steps to leading healthier lives. This is a natural step in our ongoing work to make healthier eating a little easier.

“Tesco will have its third health event in store this month and we are excited to have Jamie fronting up the helpful little swaps encouraging customers to buy products lower in fat, salt and sugar, as well as tasty, healthy recipes to try.”

Oliver was previously the face of Tesco rival Sainsbury’s, in a partnership that ran for 11 years and was believed to be worth more than £1m annually. His departure from the supermarket in 2011 was said to be amicable – however, during his time working for Sainsbury’s, Oliver criticised the company for its use of battery chickens.

The chef runs a business empire spanning recipe books, cooking utensils and restaurants. In recent years, he has run into financial difficulties which have led to the closure of several branches of his Jamie’s Italian chain and all of his Union Jacks restaurants, while his London-based Barbecoa collapsed into administration earlier this year.

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