The British summer, that unknowable beast, returned to the damp squib we’ve all been putting up with for years in 2014.

The weather-dependent barbecue market suffered as a result. In fact, barbecue occasions fell 9.3% to 116.6 million in 2014, down from 128.5 million outdoor cooking extravaganzas the previous year, a spike chiefly driven by a sizzling summer [Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 7 December 14].

Still, Brits barbecued on about 10 million more occasions than they did in 2012. Again, the weather is to thank, or blame: last summer got off to a scorching start but fizzled out later on; in 2012, it just didn’t happen. So, short of devising a climate control switch for Britain, how can more value be squeezed out of the barbecue, come rain or shine?

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