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Grilling in winter: The trend is ongoing

There is no longer a winter break for many barbecue fans. – Photo: Roesle

Delicious steaks, crispy chicken wings or simply just grilled sausages – this has long since not been restricted to the summer months. For around five to six years more and more BBQ fans have been pursuing their passion in the ice and snow here in Germany. Those, who thought this fashion would be over in a flash, were mistaken. Standing in front of a BBQ in temperatures around zero to prepare a sumptuous meal has become a special experience for many people and thus there is no longer a winter break for them.

The IFH Industry Focus on Grilling 2012 already stated: “Not only the number of barbecue fans has increased over the past years, but also the frequency of grilling throughout the year has also significantly increased. Barbecuing has become an all-year-round trend.” In a Wiesenhof survey in 2014, 13 percent of the people interviewed described themselves as being an all-year-round grill master and in an online survey on the theme of barbecuing habits of the German consumers carried out by mafowerk in the year 2015, indeed 39.2 percent stated that they also use the barbecue in the winter. According to the Wiesenhof survey, at 28 percent live broadcasts of football games are among the “Top 5” grilling occasions in Germany. It is already recognizable now that the 2022 Football World Cup in Qatar is probably going to catapult grilling in winter to new dimensions again. Because the games will not be taking place in the summer as usual, but instead in November and December.

The barbecue manufacturers are delighted. For them the winter has long since become an established season in the business year. “In the scope of our campaign, we support our trade partners in the pre-Christmas period particularly intensively,” stated Michael Reuter, CEO at Weber-Stephen Germany. “With limited special models of grills and elegant accessories we motivate people to grill in winter, reinforce the sales and increase the turnover potential. We attract the necessary attention on all channels using extensive communication materials such as posters, flyers and POS materials as well as with a strong print and online campaign.”

Above all the closed models of grills are in high demand among the consumers in winter. – Photo: Weber

Above all the closed models of grills are in high demand among the consumers in winter. Because these guarantee that the grilled food is also thoroughly cooked and doesn’t go cold quickly in spite of minus temperatures. According to the Industry Focus on Grilling, which IFH Cologne published in the summer of 2017, the barbecue market will experience further growth again this year, but particularly the market for barbecue accessories is developing at an above-average level. In addition to the grills, the BBQ fans also purchase pizza stones, wok attachments or meat thermometers with a Bluetooth function, for instance. Of course, in the meantime there are also accessories that have been especially developed for use in the winter months, for example cast-iron Dutch ovens for the preparation of goulash dishes or cast-iron muffin tins.

Cast-iron muffin tins for the barbecue. – Photo: Petromax

But not only the manufacturers of grills and accessories are benefiting from the BBQ boom in the cold winter months. Since 2013 several books have already been published on grilling in winter, which provide the readers with special recipes, tips and ideas and many cooking magazines are now also focusing on this theme again and again every year. The breweries have also discovered this trend and are placing the corresponding advertisements. Because for most Germans beer goes down best with grilled food rather than mulled wine. So that one and one’s guests can enjoy the winter atmosphere round the barbecue without getting cold feet or shivering with cold, many consumers are also investing more frequently in additional sources of heat such as gas heaters, fire baskets or flame pillars.

Of course, grills and the appropriate accessories make popular gifts under the Christmas tree. – Photo: Weber

Of course, grills and the appropriate accessories make popular gifts under the Christmas tree. This was the result of a survey on the consumer behavior of Germans in the pre-Christmas period of 2014, which was carried out by Pilot Hamburg on behalf of Weber-Stephen. Getting a barbecue for Christmas particularly pleases the men: Almost half of those interviewed (49%) stated that they are delighted about receiving a grill as the festive highlight.


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