Scripps, Comcast Unveil Carriage Deal

 Scripps Networks and Comcast officially announced Wednesday that they had reached a broad multi-year carriage agreement that includes the right to distribute HGTV HD and Food Network HD.

Comcast already has launched the networks in Boston and parts of New Jersey, and will continue to expand availability to markets over the coming year. 

Back in August, E.W. Scripps revealed in a securities filing that its cable unit had done a carriage renewal with Comcast.

In the most recent Frank N. Magid & Associates survey on the "Digital and High Definition Consumer Marketplace," 62% of adult [25-54] weekly viewers said they typically watch lifestyle programming. Among HD-TV owners [adults 25-54 and women 25-54], HGTV and Food Network make their Top 5 list of "would watch” networks in HD. Early 2007 research from Leichtman Research Group found that one in six households in the U.S. have at least one HDTV, up from one in 14 households just two years ago.

Food Network recently began converting its Chelsea Market studios in order to produce such popular programming as Rachael Ray's 30 Minute Meals and Emeril! Live with Emeril Lagasse in HD. Food Network already is producing such favorites as Paula's Party and Throwdownwith Bobby Flay in HD, while HGTV HD programming includes Small Space, Big Style, Decorating Cents and the Fine Living TV Nerwork's The Wandering Golfer among other viewer favorites.