Year In Review 2020: Consumers Stocked Up On Kitchen Prep Tools

With the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers were hungry for kitchen tools and gadgets that were innovative, functional and also appealing as they stocked their kitchens to keep up with all of the home cooking they were doing.

Even before the pandemic, the majority of consumers committed to healthier ways of eating and prepping fresh ingredients at home. Vendors stepped up to the plate to offer consumers solutions to meet their needs and to elevate the at-home experience.

HomeWorld Business 2020_Year_In_ReviewMoving & Shaking

  • Bradshaw Home appointed Scott Henrikson as svp/international.
  • Cangshan Cutlery Company named Rob Walling vp/sales.
  • Regal Ware appointed Andrew Mielke to the post of global sourcing director.
  • Wüsthof appointed Bridget DeGroot as vp/finance at Wüsthof USA. Todd Myers, vp/sales, left the company after 22 years.
  • Coravin appointed Christopher Ladd as its CEO and Jeff Lasher as chief financial officer.
  • Widgeteer named Jennifer Zadoff as its new director of sales operations.
  • J.K. Adams named Donna Cross as its new assistant sales manager. Cross will be the face of specialty retail operations.
  • Maverick named John Evans national sales manager for housewares accounts, selected hardware accounts and buying groups.

Brand News

  • Oxo, a division of Helen of Troy, celebrated its 30th anniversary and joined 1% for the Planet. The company committed to donate 1% of its annual sales toward environmental causes.
  • Rubbermaid partnered with international recycling provider, TerraCycle, to make all brands of well-used food storage containers recyclable in the U.S. and Canada.
  • Regal Ware finalized the acquisition of the Espro brand of premium coffee and tea presses and accessories.
  • Prepara and Catamount Glassware signed a licensing and distribution agreement.
  • Core Home acquired UK-based gift and pet brands, W+W and Wild and Woofy, subsidiaries of design-led lifestyle conglomerate Wild+Wolf. The company also signed an exclusive licensing deal with French Bull on an assortment of hydration and kitchenware products.
  • Kuhn Rikon USA was named the exclusive distributor of Betty Bossi products in North America.
  • Cangshan Cutlery Company entered into a licensing deal with Bonnier Corp., publisher of Saveur magazine, as it expands its Saveur Selects licensing program.
  • Robinson Home Products inked a licensing agreement with ViacomCBS for the Nickelodeon properties SpongeBob SquarePants, JoJo Siwa and Paw Patrol.
  • Wüsthof unveiled its first e-commerce website store along with a refreshed brand identity and the expansion of its Crafter line of cutlery.
  • Ginsu entered into a licensing agreement with Brand Partners Group to develop a line of kitchen gadgets under the Ginsu brand.
  • Scanpan USA was named the exclusive U.S. distributor of Sumikama Cutlery, a manufacturer of steel kitchen knives, located in Seki City, Japan.

Product Pipeline

  • Dexas debuted the Prep-Tech Cutting Board, which has a tech slot that can hold a variety of tablets, pads and smart phones.
  • Rubbermaid, a division of Newell Brands, introduced Brilliance Glass food storage and EasyFindLids food storage containers with SilverShield for antimicrobial product protection.
  • Centurion Global debuted its new Collapse-It Steamers food storage collection exclusively on QVC.
  • Prepara released the Latchlok storage system that features a unique sliding latch and venting system.
  • GreenPan, a subsidiary of The Cookware Company, released the Chop & Grill by GreenPan line of cutlery.
  • Kyocera launched InnovationBlack ceramic knives, which the company said features a fusion of ceramic materials.
  • Epicurean partnered with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation on a new licensed collection of cutting boards and kitchen tools, sold exclusively at Crate & Barrel.
  • UT Brands, home to Funwares, KidsFunwares and Barbuzzo, reorganized its portfolio of brands to capitalize on the shifting consumer interest in giftable home goods.
  • Maverick released its smart-enabled Stake wireless probe thermometer.
  • Hammer Stahl, a brand of Heritage Steel, debuted a new 6-piece BBQ cutlery collection and knife sharpening system.
  • Kai USA introduced the Shun Classic Blond line of cutlery
  • J.K. Adams retooled its facilities to produce full face shields in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • GIR produced a reloadable silicone mask to help stop the spread the COVID-19 virus.
  • GelPro created face shields for health care providers to use when working with possible and known coronavirus patients.