Next up in our Walmart Get on the Shelf contestant interview series is Jeffrey Walker. His product, the CampfireGrill, is a campfire grill with a raised edge to keep your food on the grill and not in the campfire.
What product did you submit to Walmart’s Get on the Shelf contest?
The Pioneer model campfire grill. This is one of several products in The Perfect CampfireGrill line of campfire, charcoal grills and accessories.
Where’d the idea come from?
It was a long time ago in 1988. While up north at camp, grilling on a home made campfire grill, I pushed a piece of chicken off the grill and into the fire. It was instantaneous — I’ll make sure that doesn’t happen again, I thought. However, I had know idea it would turn into a business and really a life long effort.
What’s your background (and or day job)?
I started in tool and die training, and Oakland Community Collage the year I graduated high school, ‘78. I was journeyman in ‘86 held leader and then plant manager in ‘94.
I got serious with my hobby grill business in late ‘03 after Dad passed and the auto industry was on the decline. I now import so as to be competitive. I’m still trying to have our products made in the USA.
What difficulties did you have creating the product?
I had built semi productive equipment to make the first grill style while working my day job. It was quite a daunting task, now that I think about it, making grills, selling grills, and working.
Have you sold any? (or is the product currently for sale somewhere already?)
Today we have about 20 customers nation wide and our website www.campfiregrill.com . However our customer base is quite thin. Its very difficult getting new products into major store chains from a new small company such as mine. I can provide a list if you would like.
Do you have any advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
Do what you love and ask a lot of questions, you’ll find a way.
His GOTS link is getontheshelf.com/product/761/The-Perfect-CampfireGril and his video is below.
Thanks for speaking with us and good luck!