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NPD Report: Housewares Categories Benefit From Home Entertaining Trends

In its most recent report focused on home entertaining and how consumers are purchasing in associated housewares categories, NPD reported that more than half of consumers enjoy entertaining at home and more than half of kitchenware purchases are personal rather than gift items.

“It’s holiday time again, and consumers are ritualistically preparing their homes to entertain this holiday season. Products that furnish seasonal touches and sets that satisfy their need for value are on the menu this year,” said Debra Mednick, executive director of The NPD Group’s home business.

According to the NPD report, 63% of consumers say they enjoy hosting parties at their home. Though increasing slightly over the years, less than half of all housewares items sold are purchased as gifts. Gift sales of cookware and dinnerware have both increased in share since last year, however, with cookware as the largest category (40%) with respect to gift-giving dollars within Housewares, according to the NPD report.

Dinnerware sets are seeing growth, up 5%, with three of the top 10 dinnerware patterns holiday-themed. The formal dinnerware segment has seen dollar increases of 21% as well, as noted in the NPD report.

In beverageware, the report stated, sets are outpacing the overall category, which is down compared to last year. Wine glasses and serveware like pitchers, carafes, and punch bowls are outperforming as well.

“Across housewares categories, sets now account for a larger share of market dollars than individual pieces,” said Mednick. “Rather than spending a premium on individual pieces, consumers can get everything they need in a neat package with the added benefit of saving some money.”

Multi-piece sets also accounted for more than 80% of dollars in flatware and are outpacing the category, which is down from last year. The casual segment accounts for about three-quarters of total sales, the NPD report stated. 

On the food prep side, dollar sales for bakeware are up 5%, with value packs and casserole, baking dishes and muffin pans driving much of that growth and accounting for more than a third of total sales, according to NPD.

The highest performing cookware  so far this year, the report continued, has been sauce pans, pressure cookers, stir frys/woks, steamers and PTFE/PFOA-free products.

Cutlery sales were reported as down slightly over last year, but some notable areas with double-digit dollar growth are carving/chef knives, cutlery with soft/comfort grips, 10-piece cutlery sets, and eco-friendly cutting boards.

Overall, dollar sales of kitchen linens are down, but dining linens are up 5% compared to last year, NPD reported. Kitchen towel sets and towel potholder sets grew by 9% and 24% respectively. Tablecloths, napkins, and placemat/napkin sets all showing growth as well, with the primary growth driver for textiles for use during the holiday season.