Made in South Carolina: The pros and cons of a new-look textile industry

Posted by TGarland on 09/20/2013

Did you know? Gaffney, South Carolina — most recently known for being featured in Netflix’s House of Cards — was once an integral part of the Carolina fabric trade.

Like other communities of the textile industry in the U.S., Gaffney suffered from the forces of globalization throughout the 1990s and 2000s. But Parkdale Mills, a textile maker that's the country’s largest buyer of raw cotton, reopened the doors to its once-shuttered Gaffney plant in 2010, reports Stephanie Clifford for the New York Times.

And people are taking notice. Clothing companies like American Giant are choosing to source production at Parkdale Mills, based on the mill’s advanced technology and productivity. But textile making doesn't employ the workers it used to, writes Clifford:

The mill here produces 2.5 million pounds of yarn a week with about 140 workers. In 1980, that production level would have required more than 2,000 people.

Check out the New York Times' video report below:

Interested in American Giant apparel? The company's website is right here.

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