Focus On: Barbecue by Rob Brown and Natalie Brown

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Publishing: 23 March

Advertising deadline: 8 March

Submissions deadline: 1 March

The Story

Barbecue cuisine is getting exotic. Taking their lead from out-of-home players, Brits are now looking for more than a plain burger and a bun to put on the barbie. Inspiration is everywhere. The winner of this year’s Million Pound Menu was a Filipino barbecue joint. Korean barbecue restaurants such as London’s SuperStar BBQ are all the rage. South America – home of the Picanha and sobrebarriga steak – is also proving an influence on our chargrills. For the average Brit, the easiest way to add a touch of the exotic is through spicy or adventurous sauces. That pushed up the number of barbecue occasions using table sauces by nearly 75% in 2018. But there are plenty of other ways to put a twist on the traditional BBQ. So what are Brits doing to add spice up their barbies? What are brands and retailers doing to cater for consumer demand? What will be the next big thing?

Key themes:

Cuisine: What types of cuisine are proving most popular at the BBQ? And how far are Brits going? Is it as simple as adding a touch of sriracha to your burger, or are some going as far as South American meat cuts and spice rubs?

NPD: What new products have come out to cater for the adventurous consumer? How much of this has been led by retailers, and how much by brands?

Occasions: Last year hot summer proved a boost for the BBQ season, with over 40 million more occasions in 2018 than the year before. Interestingly, there were more spontaneous barbecues. Was this down to the hot summer or will this be an ongoing trend?

Frozen: The number of BBQ occasions featuring frozen meat and veg shot up in 2018. Why was this? Is frozen helping people host more spontaneous barbecues?

Exotic drinks: If barbecue food is getting exotic, what about the drinks? To what extent are consumers pairing their creations with world beers and creative cocktails?

Vegan BBQ: You can’t talk about BBQs without mentioning the biggest trend of the moment: vegan. Kantar data shows we are using veg on ever more occasions. So what is there for the vegan consumer? What innovation has come to the fore over the past year?

Kantar data: Using Kantar commentary, we explain the reasons behind the rise and fall of the different sub-categories.

Nielsen data: Using Nielsen commentary, we explain the reasons behind the rise and fall of the top 10 brands.

Innovations: We identify four new products that ideally have not appeared in The Grocer before. including launch date, image and RSP.