Made in the USA: Have we reached a consensus?
After Wal-Mart’s U.S. Manufacturing Summit last month, the Made in America movement has received vast attention. So at the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) we have to ask the question, have we as a country of businesses and consumers decided that the revival U.S. manufacturing is a reality?
We wouldn’t say that everyone is on board, but there are signs the trend is moving towards Made in the USA. Here are some of the reasons businesses are citing for making the move:
1. It just makes sense. Much of the past two decades have seen movements of manufacturing to countries like China, namely because of cheap labor. But the rising wages in China are increasing sourcing costs.
2. Energy costs in the U.S. have declined rapidly in the last few years, due to the shale boom in much of the country.
3. Good PR. National polls show that Americans want and are willing to pay for products manufactured in the U.S.
Notable American brands are taking notice as the trend becomes more popular. Some recent examples being:
- Apple, which is set to begin assembling Mac Pros throughout the South. This is a topic AAM is trying to explore at SXSW next year. Help us get there by voting for our panel!
- Chobani, the best-selling Greek yogurt in the U.S., now operates the largest yogurt manufacturing plant in the world in Twin Falls, Idaho.
- Brooks Brothers, which now makes 70 percent of its suits in Massachusetts.
Wal-Mart’s commitment to U.S. manufacturing, even for the skeptical, has the potential to have substantial effect on the domestic economy. And there is already proof—GE has pledged to invest $30 million to produce light bulbs domestically to sell exclusively in Wal-Mart stores.
Here at AAM, our glasses are half-full and we anxiously await for Wal-Mart’s efforts to come to fruition.
Image by Flickr user Mike Kalasnik, used following Creative Commons guidlines.
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