The economic slide of recent years has
been evident at Ambiente as U.S. buyers
curtailed travel over the past few years.
But if attendance at this year’s show is
an indicator, the housewares industry is
experiencing some buoyant rejuvenation.
We ran into dozens of buyers during this
February’s show, ranging from small independents to larger specialty department
stores and online-only retailers. Importers,
distributors and manufacturers from the
States also made the journey to discover
new products, and there was plenty of
innovation and trends to be found.
With 4,543 exhibitors from 87 countries
(2011: 4,442 exhibitors, 85 countries
[FKM certified]), Ambiente 2012 continues
to lead as the largest consumer-goods
fair, growing again in terms of exhibitor
numbers and internationality. More than
140,000 visitors walked the exhibit halls,
getting a glimpse of thousands of new
products for the kitchen and home market. Organizers report that the top five
visitor nations in 2012 were Italy, France,
the USA, the Netherlands and Switzerland.
Ambiente 2012 proved itself to be a must-attend event, and Gourmet Business is
supporting the show with a contest for
the Feb. 15-19, 2013, exhibition.
Send us an e-mail explaining why you
want to attend Ambiente 2013 to be
By Michelle Moran
considered for a discounted travel package
courtesy of Messe-Frankfurt/Ambiente
and Gourmet Business. Send your story
to firstname.lastname@example.org by
March 31, 2012.
There were plenty of colorful additions at
the show; we noticed a strong showing
of floral patterns as well as comforting
shades of gray and eggplant heading
to the table and kitchen. Floral designs
focused on a retro style of patterns versus
the bold modern florals of recent years.
We’ll highlight more of these designs in
our special April tabletop edition.
Ergonomic innovations continue to spring
forth to assist the growing aging baby
boomer population, alongside hip discoveries in the barware entertaining segment
that is continuing to see a consumer boom.
Efforts for food preservation and products
that help sustain consumer demand for
shopping locally (think farmer’s markets,
home gardens and community-supported
agriculture trends) were also supported at
the show with more canning, composting
and home baking products.
We’ve wrapped up some of our favorite
items here, and you can also discover
many of these at the upcoming International Home + Housewares Show in
Chicago this month.
of the Year
The competition for the annual public
award “KitchenInnovation of the Year”
covers the following product categories:
kitchen furniture and equipment; large
electrical appliances; small electrical
appliances; cooking and kitchen utensils; and kitchen accessories.
A consumer-friendly product is one
which doesn’t just excel in one area,
but offers above-average performances
across the board. To ensure a thorough,
all-round assessment, the following
criteria are taken into account: product
innovation; ecology/sustainability and
Click here to check out this year’s
Photos: Messe Frankfurt
Exhibition GmbH / Petra
Welzel, Thomas Fedra and