The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association unveiled its trends for the industry at the HPBExpo, North America's largest indoor-outdoor trade show in Atlanta.
The trends include: "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.
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.
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.
Park and Grill: 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, the grills showcase the features and functions of a full-sized grill, but are converted to a road-friendly version.
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.
Overall, HPBA says, the year 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.