You Can Rebuild Manufacturing in the USA November 11, 2020
For the past decade and recently with the need to restore the US Economy, there has been much said about rebuilding the manufacturing segment in the USA.
There is no doubt about the importance of manufacturing to our economy, but we continue to debate on how to grow our manufacturing base. The political parties have promoted programs and incentives to stimulate manufacturing to grow good jobs in the USA. Most of these incentives involve federal, state, and local governments providing tax incentives, tax relief, direct investment, direct purchasing of goods, education, training, and relocation assistance. The advantages and disadvantages of these government programs will continue to be debated for many months and years before we know the results. Equally, there are many complexities that must be taken into consideration when deciding to re-shore or make products in America. Access to natural resources, materials, environmental regulations, skilled labor, efficient supply chains, and capital investments must all be considered. This decision is very complex and can seem impossible for us to impact.
However, there is one way that each of us can help to restore manufacturing in the USA. Buy products that are made in America. Demand for American made products naturally influences the decisions on where products are made and sold. If more people specifically demanded American made products, manufacturing in this country would expand with the growth in demand. Obviously, one reason people choose products made overseas is due to lower cost to the consumer. If given a clear choice, I will choose the higher priced American made product. In a recent article by Rosemary Coates for Supply Chain Management Review magazine, a survey found that “Americans Say They Prefer Products Made in USA and Will Pay More for Them”. You can read the article here.
Like the article states, I believe most Americans are willing to pay more for a US-made product. So why don’t Americans buy and demand more “Made in USA” products? For me, I find it difficult to know when purchasing online which products are made in the USA or at traditional retailers. Proper labeling and conspicuously promoting the “Made in USA” moniker are essential. I am not sure why many companies do not prominently promote that their products are “Made in USA”. Often, it is a small label on the back or side of the packaging or advertisement. Shelves should be labeled, and digital product banners could be added to promote American made products. This does not require government oversight or stimulus to improve labeling and product advertising. Companies must take the initiative to properly advertise and promote products so that each of us can make an informed decision. By doing so, each of us can do our part to increase and re-shore manufacturing by purchasing American made products first.
Let me know your thoughts about paying more for American made goods and identifying American made products.
Written by: MATT DIONNE, Managing Partner
Matt is a former president, board director, and C-Level executive with experience in both public and private equity firms. Further, Matt has M&A experience as well as P&L experience in both domestic and international firms. He has over 25 years of experience in discrete and continuous manufacturing in all areas of the value chain and in areas such as sales and marketing, operations, OPEX, engineering, product design, supply chain, and finance. He previously worked with firms including Siemens, Norsk Hydro, Wireco World Group, Cooper Industries, and Middleby Corporation.
Matt has an MBA from The College of William & Mary and a BS Degree in Industrial Engineering from NC State University. He lives in Florida and operates out of our Jacksonville office.
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