Trade Shows

Expert Column: New Products Debut at Atlanta Gift

Jan 19, 2015
By Anna Wolfe
   

First show of 2015 features new housewares, specialty food items

Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market is the first show of the year for many gourmet buyers.

The show, which was Jan. 6-13 at AmericasMart, features a robust selection of kitchenware, tabletop and specialty foods. Buyers from all over the US and beyond filled the halls and the aisles.

Gourmet Catalog, the Dallas-based buying group, held its member meeting and members-only vendors showcase, a tabletop show featuring its vendor members, on Jan. 8. About 150 leading gourmet housewares brands set up tabletop displays with their recent and new introductions.

Both at the Gourmet Catalog members meeting and at Atlanta Gift, a large number of the housewares products were already on the market, as most all of the suppliers are waiting until the International Home + Housewares Show to debut their latest and greatest.

Among the notable products:
The Nomiku is an immersion circulator for sous vide cooking. Pictured right is CEO Patrick Wong with the forthcoming Nomiku 2. It has a compact design and a silicone clip that attaches to the front of most pots. The San Francisco-based company’s successful Kickstarter campaign raised an impressive $750,192, almost quadrupling its $200,000 goal. (In a smart move to establish street, or should I say kitchen, cred, the Nomiku Kickstarter video includes testimonies from some of the hottest chefs today; Grant Achatz, known for practicing molecular gastronomy at his Chicago restaurant Alinea; and Chris Cosentino, winner of Top Chef Masters and a collaborator with Shun, to name a few.) The Nomiku 2, the smaller WiFi-connected version, is being made in the USA and is scheduled to ship in April. Just as impressive as its compact, easy-to-store design, Nomiku is creating an online community of supporters. SRP: $349.

Bradshaw International previewed its new bakeware and gadget line marketed under the T-fal brand. (Groupe SEB owns T-fal and continues to market the cookware line.) Also, the company showed off some exciting additions to the Good Cook’s Sweet Bake bakeware line including the Ugly Sweater Cookie Cutter and decorating tool, which will be ready for the 2015 holiday season.

Calphalon gave Gourmet Catalog buyers a sneak peek at the company's self-sharpening cutlery line that will be introduced at the International Home + Housewares Show.

At the Gourmet Catalog event and in its showroom, Le Creuset unveiled its new marketing collateral to promote its popular blue hue, Marseille. The campaign prominently features its muse – the Mediterranean port of Marseille and the traditional colors – blue, white and red – of France. At the International Home + Housewares Show, the company will expand its stainless steel cookware line. Lisa Elliott, senior brand manager, says Le Creuset America has seen a “huge trend in ethnic cooking” – coinciding with the Charleston, S.C.-based company’s recent ethnic cookware introductions: a paella pan, wok, 4-quart tagine and balti, a steel wok-like bowl used for preparing and serving curries.

Casabella Holdings showed off prototypes of its Guac-Lock, a container designed to ensure fresh storage of guacamole and other dips without browning or discoloration. The secret weapon is the push-up mechanism that squeezes out all of the air and lifts the guacamole to the top of the container, preventing browning. An added bonus: the container always looks full. It will be available to all retailers this spring. (The item, which was featured in TGR's show preview, is not launching at Sur La Table this month.)

Harold Import Co., both at its Gourmet Catalog tabletop display and in its Floor 8 showroom, showed off recent introductions, including Mrs. Anderson’s baking mats and the Peachy Clean Dish Scrubber. The housewares distributor is planning to roll out 300 new products at the International Home + Housewares Show.

The temporaries, which were open Jan 8 -12, continue to be a haven for innovative specialty food and housewares companies. Among TGR’s notable finds:

Atlanta-based Grit Bits added two new flavors, Pimento Cheese and Sweet Georgia Brownie. Grit Bits, if you haven’t had the pleasure of trying them, are cheese snack biscuits made with grits.

Holmstead Fines showed off its chutneys. Rebecca Williamson launched the Birmingham, Ala.-based company, a mere two years ago. The lineup includes a trio of chutneys, a delicious Green Tomato Chutney, Peach Chutney and Balsamic Red Onion Chutney. Williamson has pledged to donate 10 percent of its profits to local and global charities, including the International Justice Mission.

New Showrooms
Among the new showrooms, Circle Ware, known for its line of glass beverage dispensers, showed of its new AmericasMart showroom and 2015 glassware introductions in Building 2 Floor 8.

Down the hall, Good Food Services, a Columbia, S.C.,-based brokerage started by Tisa Lynn, unveiled its new showroom and products such as Effie’s Oatcakes, Giorgio Biscotti, Hannah Max Cookie Chips, and Lawless Jerky that’s made from 100 percent grass-fed beef. Good Food Services works with retailers in the Southeast.

Continuing trends that were evident at Atlanta Gift include: home canning, cheese-related entertaining items, wine/beverage accessories, blending/juicing, Made in USA, fermented foods and decorative baking.

With such a wide variety of speicalty food, gourmet housewares and tabletop products, it's easy to see why Atlanta Gift is the first show of the year for many gourmet buyers.