Biggest and Best Gourmet and Tabletop Collection to Date at AmericasMart

AmericasMart® Atlanta advances our long-standing role as the center of global entertaining trends with our January 2017 presentation of the largest-to-date permanent Gourmet Housewares, Gourmet Foods and Tabletop and Entertaining collection at The Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishings Market®. The multi-floor showroom collection showcases more than 800 lines housed in nearly 150,000 square feet of exhibition space.
The collection’s growth is fueled by top lines and designs enhanced by the accessibility and connectivity of tabletop and gourmet product strategically located and aligned to ensure natural shopping synergy. Buyers from both categories can easily source complementary merchandise on contiguous floors, and can access adjacent Building 1 home furnishings offerings, which encourage interior designers and furnishings retailers to explore new categories. This expert design has made AmericasMart the Market of necessity for top tabletop and gourmet manufacturers and specifiers, and yielded a Marketplace of flagship showrooms.
New-to-Atlanta exhibitors Crow Canyon Home, Spiker, SCS Direct, Promaster, Rojemac, Prima Design USA and TMD Holdings join lines including Versace, Wolf Gourmet, Q Squared, WusthofHoliday Fried Pecans, Stonewall Kitchen, Tervis, Baccarat Crystal, Juliska and Spiegelau at the January Market.

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AmericasMart’s permanent showrooms are complemented by the temporary Gourmet Foods, Housewares, Tabletop and Entertaining, and juried Tabletop LUXE and Gourmet LUXE collections. Highlights include Architec Brands, Coast and Cotton and Talisman Designs in Housewares; Ben & Lael, Inc., Britten Couture Home, Gitter Gallery, LLC, Libbey, Inc., Nora Fleming, LLC, Mahogany Home, Le Cluney, Magenta, Sobremesa by Greenheart and French Studio Imports in Tabletop and Entertaining; and Georgia Grown, Cherry Republic, Jelly Belly Candy Company, Louis Sherry Chocolates, Owl’s Brew, Poppy Handcrafted Popcorn, The Resident Chef, Savannah Bee Company, Verdant Kitchen, Beautiful Briny Sea, and DeBrand Fine Chocolates in Gourmet Foods, plus many, many more.

“From the pantry to the kitchen to the table, the must-have product is all here,” says Kristi Forbes, AmericasMart vice president of Gift Leasing. “Not only do we have the most comprehensive collection of housewares, gourmet and tabletop product, AmericasMart sets the trends and the standards for the industry.”

Exhibitors are reporting a wide range of buyers at the Markets. Chris Rosse of Rosse & Associates, Inc., who has shown at AmericasMart for more than 30 years, reports a mix of buyers including Latin American stores ordering high-end luxury items and younger buyers sourcing better casual product with a focus on organic or handmade craftsmanship.

Buyers are able to find inspiration like never before with a more interactive educational series in the Demonstration Kitchen, sponsored at the January 2017 Market by Fiesta Dinnerware, which launches its new color exclusively at AmericasMart. On tap are an appearance by Paula Deen; designer Nathan Turner shooting and live streaming his popular new Design Network “Snack Chat” series with food and lifestyle expert, Julia Reed; Annette Joseph, author of “Picture Perfect Parties” presenting “The Ultimate Party Pantry & Food Styling Workshop;” and a designer panel discussion “Home for the Holidays: Setting the Trends in Tabletop & Seasonal Décor” with Reed, Joseph, Bonnie Mackay and Steve McKenzie, with more events to come.

“AmericasMart has a fantastic demonstration kitchen, the best of all the markets,” says Jonathan Pearson, chief executive officer of Kitchen 2 Table. “It is the heartbeat of the facility.”

Other events at the January 2017 Market include a fundraising event for Les Dames d’Escoffier and Gourmet Catalog’s Start of the Year Member Conference.

For more information about The Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishings Market in January 2017 including events and exhibitors, visit www.AmericasMart.com/January.

Fall in Atlanta

AmericasMart re-envisions September Experience

Fall signals prime time for refreshing homes before the holidays and for selecting the perfect gifts for friends and family. Retailers can jump-start the holiday season by filling last-minute inventory, while designers can source all the elements for clients’ seasonal projects. It all depends on having the right products in place at the right time. That means shopping Atlanta in the fall.

AmericasMart’s Fall Home, Gift and Gourmet Market is evolving into an all-new buying experience scheduled for September 2016. The new Fall Design Week featuring Atlanta Gourmet & Gift offers more services and newly imagined events, all timed within the business week for the greater convenience of retailers and designers.

Fall Design WeekThe re-envisioned concept celebrates and showcases AmericasMart’s design-driven Open Year Round showrooms. The showrooms – located throughout Buildings 1 and 2 – represent leading lines in case goods and upholstery, accessories, casual furnishings, lighting, area rugs, gift, gourmet, housewares, tabletop, outdoor living, holiday, floral and more.

“AmericasMart’s Open-Year-Round showrooms provide design and retail inspiration throughout the year,” says Dave Savula, executive vice president of Leasing. “The new Fall Design Week lets us showcase these lines to retailers and designers in a more relaxed environment while offering some additional amenities and opportunities to network.”

AmericasMart’s continued growth in designer attendance is also a factor in the Market redesign. “Our Market center has more design-driven resources than ever before,” Savula says. “The new September event lets us showcase those resources like never before with a buying and educational opportunity that serves designers when it is best for their business.”

AWH_PHOTO-0338Designer-focused programming will include taste-maker presentations, continuing education courses, industry networking opportunities and celebrations. It is set to be the must-attend event for the Atlanta, Georgia and Southeastern design communities.

The popular Atlanta Gourmet exhibitors will be showcased in a series of targeted events designed to spotlight the flourishing local food and restaurant scene and the resurgence of the category with gift retailers, especially for the holiday season.

AmericasMart’s Fall Design Week featuring Atlanta Gourmet & Gift takes place Monday, September 19 through Friday, September 23, 2016. For more information, visit www.AmericasMart.com/September.

Get the Scoop

Experts dish on how to build sales of kitchen tools and gadgets
By Jessica Harlan

If it’ll make a cooking task easier and can brighten up the kitchen at the same time, chances are your customer is going to want it. And for retailers who want to build their kitchenware selection, there are plenty of options. 

Form and function
Gene Marham, principal at Synergy Sales Associates says kitchen gadgets that are colorful and make life easier seem to be selling best. Don Turano, North American president of Joseph Joseph, says nest storage and cutting boards, among other core kitchen tools and gadgets, represent bestsellers in this retail channel. He suggests retailers collaborate with their suppliers to finesse their kitchenware assortment. “While the retailer knows their consumer best, the supplier should know their product ranges and channels well, and can [recommend] the products that are meaningful across multiple categories based on sales results.”

Good, better, best
Meanwhile, Deb Flynn from Tovolo says specialty baking tools, as well as craft cocktail products, are among the company’s bestsellers at specialty retailers. Flynn emphasizes that smaller retailers can’t worry about what the big guys carry, but instead understand that they can’t be everything to everybody. “Focus on a good-better-best assortment for every category,” she says. “If a customer comes in the store and asks for a brand that you don’t have, you can easily sell them into something from your assortment if you can point out the features and benefits. Sell what you believe in, and customers will believe in you.”

Inspire home cookin’
“Color in the kitchen will always be an important way to drive new sales of products, but what is more telling are those items that speak to certain lifestyle trends,” says Laura Everage, director of PR/social media marketing at Harold Import Co. “The healthy eating trend continues to drive demand for products that make preparing home cooked meals easier and more convenient.” She adds that the interest in making food from scratch is spurring interest in the tools – from basic utensils to specialized tools.

Savvy Merchandising
Here are a few display tips to promote this already hot category and help even small retailers compete with larger specialty and big-box stores:

  • Create a dedicated area or section of your store for your kitchenware products, but also outpost the same products in a themed or seasonal vignette.
  • Everage suggests creating a visual story with a variety of products, whether it’s about color, grilling, food prep or coffee. “By bringing together similar products, the customer can better envision the product fitting in with their lifestyle.”
  • “Using products in the real life environment is always a key, so any food demonstrations always work well. Getting the consumer to use the product vs. watching a demo is always preferred,” says Turano.
  • “The more you change your displays, the more frequently you will bring in your regular customers,” says Everage. “And use email blasts or newsletters to complement what is happening in the store.”

For more information: Synergy Sales Associates 800.766.6994 synergy-sales-assoc.comJoseph Joseph 917.338.0900 josephjoseph.com; Tovolo 206.603.6066 tovolo.com; and Harold Import Co. 800.526.2163 hickitchen.com.

Temps on the Move

Tabletop & Housewares and Gourmet Foods Shift Locations
By Chris Gigley

AWH_PHOTO-6101With an aim toward connecting buyers with the product they are looking to find, AmericasMart has moved two Temporary product collections in Building 2. Tabletop & Entertaining and Housewares is now located on Floor 2, while Gourmet Foods shifted up to Floor 3.

Marie Knight, vice president of Tradeshows for AmericasMart, cites two reasons for flip-flopping the categories. First, it reflects the growth of the tabletop and housewares industry. “It’s what more people are doing these days, coming together and enjoying each other’s company,” says Knight. “As a result, there is an array of options available beyond the traditional high-end product. New lines are bringing the fun back to the category.”

AWH_PHOTO-7384The move also puts Tabletop & Entertaining and Housewares adjacent to the High Design area, a juried selection of design-oriented products located on Floor 1. Tabletop Luxe, a juried selection of high-end tabletop products in the pre-function area of Tabletop & Housewares, has moved to Floor 2, making the progression from Floor 1 to Floor 2 even more natural for buyers.

“Part of what we’re trying to do is strengthen the natural synergy that already exists between Tabletop & Housewares and the more design-oriented products found in High Design,” says Knight. “We want to attract design-oriented buyers and give them access to more of the products they need.”

Moving the Gourmet Foods area to Floor 3 provides direct access via bridge to the Temporary collections showcased in Building 3. “As consumers revive entertaining in their homes, Gourmet products continue to be a viable option for a range of retailers,” says Knight. “The location makes the collection even more accessible to a growing buyer audience.

For more information about The Atlanta International Gift & Home
Furnishings Market® January 12 – 19, 2016, visit AmericasMart.com.

Best of Atlanta 2015

Last week at The Atlanta Gourmet Market®, we celebrated the gourmet industry’s finest with our annual Best of Atlanta awards. Congratulations to the following winners!

  • Fox Point Farm’s Fabulous Fudge Sauce for Best Chocolate and Goat Milk Caramels in Salted Vanilla for Best Candy (Non-chocolate)
    Fox Point Farm 2 Fox Point Farm 3

 

 

  • Sable & Rosenfeld’s Tipsy Tapas Cheese Stuffed Baby Squash for Wild Card
    Sable and Rosenfeld

  • Plentiful Pantry’s Thai Coconut Soup for Best Soup
    Plentiful Pantry
    In addition to top gourmet products, excellence in visual design was celebrated by the Atlanta Fall Gift & Home Furnishings Market® and The Atlanta Gourmet Market® BEST OF SHOW award, presented to Never Lose Hope Designs.

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The Taster’s Choice

To sell gourmet, you have to share products and information

Today’s consumers have a sophisticated palette and are open to new, interesting AWH_PHOTO-8818gourmet products. But, to sell them, you have to let people taste them first. Otherwise, they won’t be able to fully appreciate the intricacies of creative flavor combinations.

Why not just set out samples for people to try? That’s simpler than having a person prepare and serve. Sampling gets people to try something, but doesn’t necessarily get them to buy it. Product demonstrations are interactive. Enthusiastic, educated people can sway a customer by answering questions and offering serving suggestions.

Product demos can be effective any time of year – retailers typically sell 10 times the normal product volume after a successful promotion – but demos are particularly effective during holidays when customers already purchase more food and gifts. When people are entertaining more frequently, they appreciate suggestions and options more than ever. Don’t stick to just traditional holidays; offer demos around tailgating for football season, salads when it’s too hot to cook in the summer or brunch ideas around Mother’s Day.

AWH_PHOTO-2588Here are some tips to create an effective gourmet product demonstration:

  • Sample four or five items in different categories such as a dip, a salsa, preserve or sweet topping and mustard. Consumers like variety but too many options is confusing.
  • Practice making recipes ahead of time.
  • Locate the demo adjacent to the product display.
  • Decorations can be festive, but it’s more important to keep the area neat and clean. This can be easy to overlook when you get busy.
  • Schedule the event to last several hours during high-traffic periods.
  • For best results, hand the item to customers or hold the tray rather than allowing them to pass by and graze. This encourages engagement and captures the curiosity of other shoppers.
  • Make recipes available – and stock the other necessary ingredients when possible. When you provide a complete package, you also provide an instant solution for them to add to their culinary repertoire.

Gourmet products are available in both permanent showrooms and temporaries at AmericasMart during Markets. Explore all the possibilities to spice up your sales with product demos!

Some Like It Hot

The Atlanta Gourmet Market was on fire this year. Products ranging from snacks and soups to pickles, barbecue sauce and more packed the heat. The spicy sources were not all your traditional jalapenos and habaneros – sriracha, cumin, curry and even honey were in the mix.

Mississippi Cheese Straw Factory’s Sriracha Cheese Straws – inaugural winners of our Best of Atlanta Wild Card category – are definitely not your mama’s party snack.

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Barbeque master Trish Hines heats up her award-winning Sassy Q BBQ sauce with a secret blend of spices and ingredients including honey in the Spicy version.

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Rapid Gourmet’s Brown Rice Cumin Curry Soup Mix is both sizzling and savory.

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Fat Mama’s Fire & Ice Pickles start sweet but end with heat.

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What’s your favorite fiery Market find?