Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools


Annual Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Expo Unveils Hundreds of New Products and Outdoor Cooking Trends for 2012

Atlanta, Georgia (March 1, 2012) – The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) unveils the hottest new products and trends the barbecue industry has to offer today during HPBExpo, at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. With more than 300 exhibitors and nearly 5,000 attendees, the annual Expo is the largest indoor-outdoor living show in North America showcasing the latest must-have products for barbecues, outdoor kitchens and tailgates.

With 86 percent of North American households owning a grill or smoker, and the majority (62 percent) of grill owners using their grills year round, the barbecue industry remains hot. Shipments of grills and smokers reached more than 14.7 million in 2011 alone.

“With the continued popularity of outdoor cooking, manufacturers are looking for new ways to keep the spark of this favorite activity alive. The focus of 2012 is all-in-one work areas, multi-functional grills, keeping safety a top priority and continuing to innovate accessories for easier and fun cooking experiences,” said Leslie Wheeler, HPBA communications director. “From the grilling novice to the most seasoned chef, this year’s Expo offers something for everyone.”

2012 Trend Watch

With the warmer months and peak outdoor cooking season fast approaching, consumers can expect to see grills, smokers and outdoor living products in high demand. Unveiled today at HPBExpo, the trends that will drive sales during 2012 and beyond include:

One-Stop Shop: With the 24/7 lifestyle many are now living, having everything in one place is always ideal, and desired. New outdoor cooking units are focusing on this with stainless steel refrigerators, bottle openers, beverage centers, brick ovens and other cooking elements built right in, providing a satisfying and convenient outside cooking experience.

Safety First: Safety has always been a priority for the industry, but in 2012, we are seeing even more innovations. From new propane tank carriers that sit upright in the trunk or back seat while in compliance with published safety standards, to new grills that use the turbo-effect cooking method created by a blower system that does not use any propane or explosive fuels, these new products are designed with safety in mind.

Portable-n-Powerful: Easy, practical and durable, portable grills and smokers are key to getting the grill party started no matter the location. Perfect for tailgates, picnics and camping, today’s portable grills and smokers are not only lightweight, but come equipped with new features and technologies, like infrared grilling, to make on-the-go outdoor cooking a category of its own.

Accessories Come Out on Top: One of the hottest trends of 2012 is the outdoor cooking accessory. Every year, manufacturers come up with new and innovative ways to make your cooking experience easy and fun. Pellets now come infused with spices to give your food intense flavor with no mess or soaking. Also new this year, an all-in-one grilling utensil with a heat shield grip to ensure you can grill your food and still beat the heat. Attachments include fish flippers, slider flippers, fork attachment and barbecue sauce brush attachment.

Shipments Remain Strong in 2011

In 2011, more than 14.7 million grills and smokers shipped in North America with a slight decrease (1.88%) from 2010. Gas grills continue to top the charts as the most popular type of grill, followed by charcoal and electric.

  • Total Gas Grill Shipments (57 percent of sales) – 8,445,000
  • Total Charcoal Grill Shipments (41 percent of sales) – 6,047,000
  • Total Electric Grill Shipments (2 percent of sales) – 288,000

Re-ignite the Spark!

May is National Barbecue Month and the kick-off to the peak grilling and smoking season, and also a prime time for consumers to buy the latest grilling and outdoor equipment and accessories. Retailers see their highest sales during the summer months, but also recognize steady sales continuing into the fall with consumers cooking outdoors well past Labor Day and into the winter months.

To keep up-to-date with the latest and greatest outdoor cooking tips, tricks and recipes throughout National Barbecue Month and all year long, follow HPBA on Facebook:, and Twitter:

For more industry and HPBExpo information, please visit and

About Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA)

The 2,800-member Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA), based in Arlington, VA, is the North American industry association for manufacturers, retailers, distributors, representatives, service firms and allied associates for all types of hearth, barbecue and patio appliances, fuels and accessories. The association provides professional member services and industry support in education, statistics, government relations, marketing, advertising, and consumer education.


Leslie Wheeler
Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association
703-522-0086, ext.116

Carrie Soforenko

Document Actions