There is no better time than the Fourth of July to begin a "Buy American-made" tradition. It's starts by checking the labels. Nutrition labels on food tell you what contents are in a product. Country of origin labeling tells you where the contents came from and where they were assembled. With a few exceptions, the government does not require this labeling; however companies are typically proud to display their "Made in the USA" origin. More than ever, American consumers want to purchase products made here and support jobs throughout our country.
Tips on buying American-made
Here a few tips to follow to help you find local American Made products now and throughout the year:
1) Whenever possible, patronize local retailers. Very often these retailers offer products that are made locally if not regionally. They are also better versed on the origin of the products they carry.
2) Check labels. There was a time when “Look for the Union Label” was a major advertising campaign that reinforced the purchase of US-made apparel. That was in the 1970’s and early 1980’s. This campaign was designed to stem the influx of foreign clothing. Unfortunately, it could not stem that tide. According to the blog titled Clothing Made in USA “In 1965, manufacturing accounted for 53% of the entire economy. The US manufactured 95% of what it needed. Manufacturing has rapidly decreased since the late 1970′s. In 1988, manufacturing slipped to 39% of the entire economy. And by 2004, manufacturing accounted for only 9% of the economy. So be sure to look at the labels.
3) Making home repairs or purchases? Be sure to mention you are interested in using Made in America products. This is not as easy as it seems. An ABC News program hosted by David Muir highlighted the need to support American companies that are manufacturing in our country. A real eye opener, this investigative report is available online.
4) Buy quality, not quantity. While the lure of cheap imported products can be enticing, higher quality American-made products will last for years to come. You may pay more initially, but you will save money in the long run.
Utilize the internet to help with your search
It can be a challenge to find American-made products. We all lead busy lives, so you may want to take advantage of the many websites that feature consumer goods produced in the United States. We have included a short list of some of websites you may want to use as a resource. A few have on-line shopping tools as well.
American Made Matters
Description from site: The American Made Matters® mission is to educate consumers that buying US-made products strengthens the American dream. This site has a database of businesses that provide both retail and wholesale goods. Be sure to check out their short video titled “Choose American.”
USA Love List
A shopping and style site celebrating the very best of American Made products.
The Made in America Movement
A conduit for change by uniting American voices and increasing American jobs
Made in the USA Challenge
Description from site: Made in USA Challenge is a resource for the conscious consumer to find made in USA goods that are safe, ethically made, eco-friendly and awesome.
Description from site: American Certified is your one-stop resource for everything and anything regarding the made in USA movement. Here is a link to their video.
American Made Everything
Description from site: We are an interconnected database of American-made products and service. We list only American made products and service. We do not buy or sell products. We are a service directory for American Made Everything. We hope to provide consumers with American made goods and service which creates or sustains jobs in America.
Buy Direct USA
Description from site: BuyDirectUSA.com offers a list of companies that sell products made in the USA and/or manufacturer products in the USA.
Made in America Store
Description from site: Our mission is to restore U.S. manufacturing jobs by providing American consumers a brick & mortar store and e-commerce site that guarantees that each product sold is entirely American in materials and labor.
Made in America Gift Guide
Description from site: Our Made in America Gift Guide was created to help shoppers find gifts for family, friends and special occasions that are American Made.
Made in the USA
Description from site: MadeInTheUSA.com is an e-commerce website featuring America’s largest collection of U.S.-made products. You can watch their short video here.
Made in USA Forever
Description from site: Based in Oceanside CA, in San Diego county, Made in USA Forever.com was founded by Todd Lipscomb to provide an easy, fun way to buy products made in the USA by suppliers across our nation.
According to the website Made in the USA.com “If every American spent an extra $3.33 on U.S.-made products, it would create almost 10,000 new jobs. And, if every builder used just 5 percent more American-made products, it would create 220,000 jobs.” It is clear, that each one of us can have a positive impact on our economy by simply making the decision to buy products made at home. We hope these tips and resources will help you begin your “Buy American” tradition.