Smithsonian magazine says Thermomix in USA question is “difficult to understand”
The US press is catching up to what the world already knows: Thermomix is a kitchen machine with unrivaled popularity and a culture all its own.
As 7+ million global Thermomix owners talk among themselves online, our friends in the United States are listening in. A culinary curiosity has been irreversibly piqued — chefs and savvy home cooks are starting to ask why Vorwerk does not sell Thermomix in USA.
Recently a piece about the Bimby phenomenon generated much interest from readers curious about Thermomix in USA. Confusion ensued when the Portuguese article was syndicated by the US Wall Street Journal and US-based readers sought clarity about availability of the super kitchen machine.
Today’s follow-up article by Tuan C. Nguyen of the Smithsonian offers a more helpful perspective on the question of “Why is Thermomix not sold in USA” while striving for (but not always finding) clarity.
Curious about why there is no Thermomix in USA? Let’s explore these six findings from the Smithsonian article, quoted in blue:
“The beauty of the Thermomix is that its mixer bowl is augmented with a timer-controlled heating mechanism that enables it not only to cook, but also steam vegetables, melt butter and emulsify sauces and seasonings.” —Yes, But there’s more! The integrated scale, reverse functions and kneading functions are not mentioned. Too bad the writer was not able to test the machine himself!
“the gadget’s rapidly rising popularity is mainly a European phenomenon, most notably in countries like Italy, Spain and Portugal, where the mechanical chef’s assistant even outsells premium iPad tablets“ — More research would have revealed the ‘gadget’s’ popularity extends to Australia, where 50,000 units were sold in 2013.
“Interested buyers in the U.S., however, would have to purchase a version of the $1,327 ultimate cooking machine from an international classifieds site like eBay.” — Oops! Is this really what Vorwerk wants? Definitely NOT a good idea. Beware of scammers. (Would eBay scammers continue to have a market if Vorwerk were to sell Thermomix in USA through legitimate distribution channels?)
“Though its difficult to understand exactly why the Thermomix never caught on among the American populace, local loyalists do feel that the failing boils down to at least two big factors. Besides costing nearly a grand and half, a steep price point, the system isn’t as intuitive as your typical single-use appliance and even requires some degree of training. Considering that owning one involves a degree of personal investment, buyers aren’t just committing themselves to a machine, but a lifestyle.“ — Interesting points… how do Thermomix owners feel about this statement??
What’s not to love?
I love seeing Thermomix in the news! I love that it’s interesting enough to be mentioned in the Smithsonian magazine, and that the article mentions the blog you’re now reading as a source of information! But Thermomix is a super kitchen machine loved by millions around the world and each Thermomix owner will have his/her own reason for embracing the machine. Sadly, with almost any article written by someone who is removed from the story, and has not used Thermomix for a requisite trial period in a real-life setting, the perspective is incomplete and biased towards the few sources quoted. Don’t get me wrong people — I applaud Mr. Nguyen’s research, but there’s more to this story than meets the page.
- read the full article by Tuan C. Nguyen on Smithsonianmag.com
- see more interesting news & numbers about Thermomix