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Lump Charcoal: what makes a quality product

Charcoal is produced when wood is heated up in an oxygen-poor environment to very high temperatures. This process is called carbonisation, as all the non-carbon material is removed from the wood, leaving a high carbon product perfect for BBQs. If you are looking to venture into cooking your next BBQ with lump charcoal, we have some pointers for you to consider:

  • Temperature and burn time: lump charcoal burns hotter, for less time than briquettes, however the performance of different lump charcoal products varies greatly, and there are a few factors that will mean you’ll get a red hot burn for longer.
  • Sizing: for best performance in a BBQ, you’ll want large pieces of charcoal and consistent sizing. The more smaller pieces and dust in the bag, the more you pay for the useable charcoal! It is a much more economical product when the fine material is screened out and not included in the bag.
  • Timber: the density of materials used in charcoal production vary widely. The denser the hardwood used, the longer the burn.
  • Smell and smokiness: this is an indicator of the quality of wood used (for example mangrove charcoal can smell ‘swampy’), as well as the sophistication of the carbonisation process. A highly refined, industrial grade carbonisation will give a higher purity carbon, and a less smoky burn.
  • Sourcing: it is important to check that the charcoal is made from sustainably sourced timber, and from a reputable supplier.

We have done the hard work for you in making a quality lump charcoal available at a great price in Bunnings stores, all you need now is to grab a bag, and get yourself some meat!


  Heat Beads® Hardwood Lump charcoal                     Other charcoal currently in Australian market