Monday, September 15, 2014

Value of Made in America

As more and more attention is focused on manufacturing and what gets made where, the question is being asked . . . . What does it mean to be ‘made in America’?

The Federal Trade Commission has long reigned in this area, with specific guidelines spelled out on its website. Under tools for consumers, the FTC states “. . . there is no law requiring manufacturers and marketers to make a “Made in USA” claim. But, if a business chooses to make the claim, the FTC’s Made in USA standard applies. Made in USA means that ‘all or virtually all’ the product has been made in America.”  

That makes everything clear, right? Not exactly.

There is also the Buy America Provisions, under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which places requirements on manufactured products for federal funds distributed to federal, state, and local governments. These funds, when distributed, must adhere to specific requirements relative to the final products. They must contain a certain percentage of domestic or USA manufactured goods or components.

So, what does it mean to Buy American or to purchase products with the ‘Made in America’ label.

It’s true that it’s a challenge to sustain oneself on American made products, but those days appear to be dwindling. As more and more people take up the challenge to outfit a home or a room with American made products or to travel the US using the same, it’s truly amazing what treasures can be found. In fact, American Made Movie will premiere at various Manufacturing Day events across the country on October 3rd, highlighting the successes of companies that have had a positive impact on domestic manufacturing jobs.

The Department of Commerce is evaluating the interest in creating a certifiable standard for the Made in America Label. What value would this have to consumers? What value for Manufacturers?

What do you think? Sound off in the comments. 

Since 1991, MMTC has assisted Michigan’s small and medium-sized businesses compete and grow. Through personalized services fitted to meet the needs of clients, we develop more effective business leaders, drive product and process innovation, promote company-wide operational excellence and foster creative strategies for business growth and greater profitability. Find us at www.mmtc.org

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