Healthy food porn?

Jamie Oliver and friends

It seems that only yesterday Jamie Oliver was scooting around London on The Naked Chef. But now he's not just a TV chef or cookbook author (incidentally, at the top of the EYB Library), but sits at the heart of an empire with over 8,000 employees. His latest focus is on his YouTube channel, FoodTube. The Observer explores Oliver's ambitious goals for his online network.

Sensing that a lot of the video content related to food was subpar, Oliver thought YouTube would be a good platform to get out his healthy foods message. He notes that currently, "after porn, the second most searched thing online is food. It's radically massive. Yet it hasn't got a platform. It hasn't got a standard. It's just a load of filthy shit in general. It's just a load of crap. And the sites growing most aggressively are not those of food lovers, they're a bunch of plop." Oliver thinks that people want better video food content. "People want to know how to skin a rabbit. They want to know how to make a pie. They want to know how to make a hot water pastry, puff pastry, sugar crust pastry. They really, really do."

But FoodTube is more than just delivering good content, it's also a platform to launch new chefs. Kerryann Dunlop has her own channel on the site, and she has just published a book of her recipes. Other chefs on Oliver's channel include DJ BBQ, Gennaro Contaldo, Cupcake Jemma, and Felicitas Pizarro. Oliver will need all the help he can get to reach his goal, which is to be at the top of Google's rankings. "I believe it has the capacity to make the difference to more than a billion people. That for me is really exciting."

Photo courtesy The Observer

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