US newspaper NY Times starts food delivery business

People walking past the south entrance of the New York Times building at 620 Eighth Ave in New York in this file photo taken on Apr 28, 2016.
People walking past the south entrance of the New York Times building at 620 Eighth Ave in New York in this file photo taken on Apr 28, 2016. PHOTO: AFP

New York (AFP) - The New York Times has cooked up a new business idea, delivering meal kits that are linked to its interactive recipe website and mobile application.

The big US daily announced a tie-up Thursday with online meal preparer Chef'd that will allow Times readers to get home delivery of recipes featured by the newspaper.

As part of the partnership, consumers will be able to choose and order meal kits from a selection of NYT Cooking recipes.

Readers may also sign up for a subscription to receive a specified number of meals per week from Chef'd, which is one of a growing number of meal-kit services including Blue Apron and Hello Fresh.

"Chef'd's innovative platform is an ideal resource for those who value the highest-quality food and most-trusted recipes from NYT Cooking," said Michael Greenspon, the newspaper's general manager for news services and international.

"This collaboration will offer users an extensive array of recipes from NYT Cooking's rich collection paired with the unique culinary experience of Chef'd." The newspaper this week reported a slump in advertising revenues for both print and digital, dragging the newspaper group into the red for the first quarter, underscoring a struggle with its transition to online readership.

The loss for shareholders was US$8.3 million (S$11.3 million) in the quarter, narrower than the US$14.3 million deficit in the same period a year ago. Overall revenues dipped 1.2 percent to US$380 million.

The paper has one of the world's largest newsroom operations but has been making a slow transition to the digital era, especially in the global arena where Internet-only news sites have been leading growth.