New York -- The main course is slated for March 10-13 in Chicago. But, as part of a new publicity-rich tradition from the International Housewares Association, the appetizer took place here in Manhattan.
And this appetizer was a substantial dish -- 50 companies presented their home and housewares products to the media.
The International Home + Housewares Show Preview event included a mix of well-known brands and first-time Housewares Show exhibitors, said Debbie Teschke of the International Housewares Association, hosts of the 2018 International Home + Housewares Show. The coffee industry was well represented, as were products that keep food and drinks cool while hiking to work, or to play. Pots and pans were prevalent, as were air quality products.
The emergence of housewares as a popular entree for hardware and home improvement merchants has been an industry trend for years. And based on the cross-over appeal of many of the products at the Manhattan preview, the hardware industry isn't going to lose its taste for the category any time soon.
Global housewares spending rose to $355.4 billion, an increase of 2.4%, in 2016 – the most recent available statistics, according to IHA’s 2017 State of the Industry Report. In the U.S. alone, housewares expenditures increased 6.0% to $87.1 billion.
In Chicago, the show is expected to attract more than 2,100 exhibitors from around the world, including 400 first-time exhibitors. Tom Garda, president of New Jersey-based Select Home Products, has attended the Housewares Show for years. "We'll be looking for product trends and customers," he said. "It's always a good show to learn, and put our products on the map."
The Show continues its emphasis on the smart home and connected products by expanding the IHA Smart Home Pavilion, offering increased education and networking opportunities. The Smart Talks stage will feature presentations, panel discussions, interviews with industry leaders and more throughout the show.
"The high demand to be a part of our world-class marketplace continues for our IHA member suppliers," said Phil Brandl, IHA president and CEO. "We look forward to bringing the industry together at the premier global housewares industry event."