The global sportfishing industry converged the second week in July on Orlando, Fla., for its 55th annual International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades (ICAST).
The premier feature for ICAST exhibitors and attendees is the New Product Showcase, which embodies the industry's innovative and entrepreneurial spirit and rewards that ingenuity through the "Best of Show" new product awards competition. This year nearly half of the exhibiting companies entered over 700 tackle products and accessories into the New Product Showcase. Best of Show Awards
For 2012 the Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 12 by Hobie Cat, was voted by buyers and media as the best product in both the Boat category and the overall "Best of Show." New Product Showcase winner's also included first-time ICAST exhibitor SeaQualizer and two returning ICAST exhibitors, Luna Sea and Magnetic Marine, which were also first-time winners.
Eight 2011 showcase winners also won Best of Show honors in 2012: Hobie Cat, JL Marine Systems, Inc., Pure Fishing, Johnson Outdoors, Costa, G. Loomis, 3D Picture Store and Koppers Fishing & Tackle Corporation.
FishSmart Tackle Program
A new category in the New Product Showcase recognized tackle that works to conserve fisheries and improve the survival for released fish. In this, its inaugural year, The SeaQualizer, developed by the Florida-based company Finovation Inc., took the top spot in the FishSmart Tackle category. The SeaQualizer is a noninvasive, pressure activated, fish recompression tool that is capable of releasing fish at targeted depths.
Here’s the winning lineup of "Best of Show" awards for 2012:
Overall Best of Show: Hobie Cat, Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 12
Apparel: Columbia Sportswear, Airgill Chill Zero Long Sleeve Shirt
Boat: Hobie Cat, Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 12
Boating Accessory: JL Marine Systems, Inc., Power-Pole Drift Paddle
Combo: Pure Fishing, Inc., Penn Battle Combo
Electronics: Johnson Outdoors, Humminbird 360 Imaging
Eyewear: Costa, Costa 580 P Sunrise Lenses
Fishing Accessory: American Premier Corporation, The Ultimate Line Winding System
FishSmart Tackle: The SeaQualizer
Fly Fishing Accessory: Luna Sea, Master Guide Fly Rod "Cush It"
Fly Fishing Reel: Eagle Claw Fishing Tackle – Wright & McGill, Sabalos Saltwater Fly Reel
Fly Fishing Rod: G. Loomis, NRX Fly Rod
Freshwater Reel: Pure Fishing, Inc., Abu Garcia Revo
Freshwater Rod: St. Croix Rods, Legend Xtreme
Giftware: 3D Picture Store Inc., Jigsaw
Kids' Tackle: Pure Fishing, Inc., Shakespeare Hide-A-Hook Bobber Kit
Line: Pure Fishing, Inc., Berkley Trilene XL/XT
Hard Lure: Koppers Fishing & Tackle Corporation, Live Target Frog Popper
Soft Lure: Lunkerhunt LP, Bento Baits
Saltwater Reel: Pure Fishing, Inc., Penn Spinfisher V
Saltwater Rod: St. Croix Rods, Legend Inshore
Tackle Management: Magnetic Marine Products, Inc., Gear Grabbar Lure Hangar Kit
Terminal Tackle: Pure Fishing, Inc., Berkley Gulp! Jig Heads