From my personal experience and from the comments of our suppliers and especially customers like you, no one is expecting the government to rescue our economy. In fact, most of us suspect that Congress can’t stop arguing long enough to get anything meaningful done.
Most of our US manufacturing vendors whom we visit and discuss these issues with are for the most part in a state of limbo with their expansion plans. They are not sure what is going to happen to their taxes next year; and, therefore don’t know if it is safe for them to make investments in equipment, or if they should take a wait-and-see approach. But many are taking the plunge into expanding their businesses simply because they know it is the right thing to do.
Our customers and your customers are starting to read labels more, and that is exactly what it is going to take: A grassroots awakening that it is “our” economy and “our” jobs that come from “our” products! But since there is no longer a requirement to place a “made in” label on many items (just on the outside packaging), it is going to be harder to tell where something is made, and it will be up to the wholesale buyers like you to keep demanding US-made products.
A Story Worth Telling
Nashville Wraps has a deep commitment to produce its products in the USA. Earlier this year we were at around 72% made in the USA; today looking at the past quarter, we are at 77% and growing!
Often we have to help vendors reinvent themselves in order to do that. We have been successful in replacing many of our products which were previously only available from China, but are now produced (with a few Americanized twists) in places like East Tennessee, Central Michigan, Northern and Central Indiana, New Jersey and many others. Lots of these places are small towns who have seen their businesses become a shadow of their former selves, but are now finding hope for a brighter future because of the belief that people like you and me understand the commitment it takes to buy and sell USA products.
We also will find the time to mentor new local business. My friend Scott Howard is a good example. He roasts coffee to order here in Hendersonville, Tenn. It’s a new and emerging gourmet trend.
Scott takes the best Arabica coffee beans, then perfects them one small batch at a time for an outstanding brew at the peak of freshness. Scott’s plan is to market coffee through wholesale channels. If you would like more information, contact him through www.portsidejava.com or [email protected] (Scott is also a licensed commercial ship captain).
Building the economy isn’t rocket science. It’s regular people like you, me and Scott taking on the risks and making a commitment to grow business one customer at a time.
Read more of our Made in America blogs.
Robby Meadows, President