Following a record-breaking year in 2007, the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association’s (HPBA) recently released the latest predictions for trends in the industry.
2007 was a record-breaking year for the barbecue industry, shipping 17,431,500 total grills — the highest since HPBA began recording shipments in 1985.
“Offering grills and accessories for every budget, every occasion and every personality and style, manufacturers recognize the need for convenient, easy to use, yet sophisticated state-of-the art products,” said Leslie Wheeler, HPBA Director of Communications. “With the highest shipment numbers in more than 20 years and the majority of consumers grilling year-round, the industry continues to live up to the challenge of producing products that will further enhance the grilling experience.”
On it's website, the HPBA features , including this fact sheet on How To Create A Great Outdoor Room
. It can be used by designers, remodelers and suppliers to help their clients decide what they want for their outdoor living space. In addition, the HPBA website
, has many helpful resources and industry links that can assist those who are active in the industry.
Top Trends to Drive Sales
Top trends to drive sales in 2008 were identified.
- “You”nique Grills: Manufacturers are honing in on the individuality and needs of grillers by adding distinctive features. Attachable sushi bars, portable woks, cast iron griddles and advanced control tools, such as a grill-surface temperature indicating when to flip and serve, are emerging as popular features which allow consumers to prepare a variety of new and favorite foods on the grill. And grillers can even go as far as personalizing add-on features; for example, the legs and handles of portable woks can be customized to feature favorite animals, characters or building shapes.
- Outdoor Living: Outdoor living continues to reign as a major trend for the industry as consumers remodel backyard patios and build outdoor kitchens to make the outdoor experience more enjoyable. The industry is also seeing outdoor rooms becoming an extension of the family and living rooms. The transition from the interior of the home to the exterior living space is now being designed with wider doorways to tie the two environments together. Outdoor furniture is being upgraded to coordinate fabrics from inside to outside, mixing and matching solid with patterned designs and textures.
At the forefront of the outdoor living trends are baby boomers. Having the most disposable income of any other generation, boomers are building outdoor kitchens as a popular way to upgrade homes without having to move. More so, outdoor kitchens are becoming a traditional feature for builders to include in new homes plans, as opposed to an optional room.
- Accessories Made Simple: Grilling gadgets and accessories do more than just flip your food. From food warmers and insulated grill covers to grill grates and basting tongs, accessories are a griller’s best friend to help enhance the grilling experience and make food even more delicious than ever. Even clean-up accessories are turning up the heat with new advancements. Steam clean grill brushes make it faster to clean the grill, allowing for more time to spend with friends and family.
- Park and Grill: Whether a football fanatic, camping enthusiast or a griller on-the-go, portable grills are a must-have for consumers. Light-weight, durable and easy to take with you no matter your destination, portable grills make grilling anywhere possible. Growing in popularity, these grills showcase the features and functions of a full-sized grill, but are converted to a road-friendly version.
- Team Spirit: Grilling while showing team spirit has evolved into a sport of its own. As fans travel home or away to take part in the pre-game tailgate festivities, portable grills are adapting and accessories such as collegiate grill pads and other vital grilling tools, like spatulas and tongs, now tout team logos. Some grills can even attach to hitch of a pickup truck, allowing consumers to pull down the tailgate and start the party in the parking lot.
- Grill Gone Green: As consumers go green, so has their grilling. To meet the consumer demand for more environmentally-friendly products, manufacturers are producing grills that use less propane and more eco-friendly charcoal. At the same time, consumers are choosing earth tones for their outdoor living fabrics, in support of environmental awareness.
2007 Grill Shipment Breakdown
2007 was a record-breaking year for the barbecue industry, shipping 17,431,500 total grills — the highest since HPBA began recording shipments in 1985. Gas grills continue to top the charts as the most popular type of grill, followed by charcoal and then electric.
- Total Gas Grills Shipments – 10,281,500
- Total Charcoal Grills Shipments – 6,863,000
- Total Electric Grills Shipments – 287,000
- Nearly eight out of ten (77 percent) households own an outdoor barbecue grill or smoker.
- Sixty-eight percent of households that own a grill own a gas grill, followed by charcoal (37
percent) and electric (2 percent).
- Liquid propane (LP) gas grills continue to be the most widely owned type of grill, with 94
percent of all gas grill owners owning a LP gas grill.
Although the majority of grill owners use their grills year-round (58 percent), May through September remains the peak grilling season. May – National Barbecue Month – kicks off the grilling season, and also a prime time for consumers to tend to buy the latest in equipment and accessories. Retailers see their highest sales during the summer months, but also recognize steady sales continuing into the fall with consumers grilling well past Labor Day and into the winter months.