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The Weekend Refuel Newsletter for 5/27/23

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While grilling season never ends for many of us, Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of grilling season. We’ll see if this summer is better for grill sales than last summer, but it may be an uphill battle. Similar to what we heard from The Home Depot last week, Lowe’s said this week that they’re seeing consumer softness, especially on big ticket discretionary purchases.

They do think they have a path to growth though, and it’s through expanding their offerings at rural stores. They have a new assortment planning tool to help with their localization strategy. They’re going to offer new categories like Carhartt apparel, trailers, fencing and other products to those customers.

Traeger wants to continue to be an innovator in grilling, so they made a big hire this week. They have a new EVP of Engineering to focus on product development and technical execution. The new executive comes from the audio company Sonos and before that Bose.

Char-Broil released a new griddle in the premium griddle segment. The Char-Broil Vibe takes the Vibe 535 gas grill that they released last year, and swaps the cooking grates for a griddle top. A unique feature is it has ample shelf space for entertaining.

Another new product for Char-Broil this week is a new cart. While the recently released Oklahoma Joe’s cart was all about food prep, the Char-Broil version is focused on entertaining. It has space for wine bottles, a cutting board and garnish caddies.

Finally, Gozney hosted their remote restaurant this week on the Jurassic Coast. Chef Chris ‘Flamebaster’ Roberts partnered with Gozney on the event, and created a menu featuring ingredients sourced within 10 miles of the pop-up. The whole meal was cooked on the Gozney Roccbox pizza oven.

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