By Austin Miller, Content Marketing Manager
In the 80's Joe Traeger invented the wood pellet BBQ grill. And though it's design resembled traditional smokers—it included a hardwood pellet hopper in place of the traditional side-mounted firebox. This small but revolutionary changed has helped to create a cult-following and passionate fanbase (especially in the Pacific Northwest).
Grill talk aside, it's no longer the 80's—and not only is Traeger Grills still here some 30 odd years later (a formidable feat of its own), its new CEO Jeremy Andrus is helping take it to the next level.
You guys have a killer looking office. Did you have a designer? Or did it just come together organically?
We partnered with Method Studio and Henricksen Butler to help us capture the vision. We wanted a space that was reflective of our purpose bringing people together to create a more flavorful world. We have a state-of-the-art indoor kitchen/classroom/studio which is used for broadcast recording, public grilling and barbecue classes and dining events.
What would you attribute your awesome growth to?
We stand in the fire by being innovative and testing the status quo. We have invested in our product, facilities and team to match and fuel the passion our consumers have for our product.
How's the vibe at Traeger HQ? It seems like there would be a lot of fun activity with all those grills lying around…
We get a lot of people asking ‘when do you guys open?’ thinking that we are a restaurant when they see the grills smoking on our patio and end up getting little tour of the office, their next question is usually ‘are you guys hiring?’.
Those grills are going all the time! We have always ready grills so people can throw their lunch on a Traeger, go back to work and have a delicious lunch… that is of course, when our chefs aren’t already cooking lunch for the team.
What was the reason for Traeger’s move from Portland to SLC?
After the ownership change in 2014, it became obvious that the culture and team morale had been neglected for some time. In order to disrupt the BBQ industry, we needed the right people and the right atmosphere. Utah is a great place to run a business and we’ found a home in Sugarhouse.
HOW OFTEN DOES THE “TEST KITCHEN” GET USED?
Every day! We have 4 full-time chefs on staff that are always testing recipes for photoshoots and cooking for our team. We eat together at least 3 times every week.
Does Traeger Have a Business Philosophy?
We win with team and culture. The rest can be taught but coming to work everyday surrounded by like minded people all looking to do remarkable things is the foundation of our business philosophy. Momentum begets momentum.