In the mid-twentieth century, most successful American manufacturing companies proudly proclaimed the fact that their products were made in America. That meant they cared, not only about the quality of the products they produced, but also about providing jobs for US workers or supporting the local contract manufacturers who supplied the components of their products. The American factory fueled the American Dream and provided the foundation of middle-class prosperity.
US manufacturing evolved in a different direction as the New Millennium approached. Access to contract manufacturers around the globe offered opportunities to control costs. Investors celebrated the opportunity for greater profits by offloading large capital expenditures. But today, the tide of offshoring is turning. The trend now is toward reshoring and nearshoring. Trade wars between the US and foreign nations like China and rampant supply chain issues for critical products accelerated by the pandemic are bringing manufacturing back to the US.
Will the reshoring trend continue? It seems so. According to a recent study by Thomas, 69% of American companies said that they were likely to shift manufacturing and sourcing back to North America. Modern contract manufacturing practices are cost effective. As prices charged by companies in other nations increase, and new, cost-effective US contract manufacturing techniques evolve, reshoring production makes sense for US companies.
If America's most successful companies returned their manufacturing to the US, then imagine the positive effect on the American economy. If you're a manufacturer with an eye on the future, it's time to check out the potential advantages offered by today's US-based contract manufacturers.
These 7 examples of companies that have found ways to keep production in the US, or sell a significant number of "Made in USA" products sourced from the Chamber of Commerce’s list of "10 Successful Companies Manufacturing in the USA". Leading companies like these have figured out innovative ways to continue to produce their products in this country, whether by maintaining production at their own facility or through obtaining components or finished products from US contract manufacturers.
This company has made legendary trailers and recreational vehicles at its Jackson Center, Ohio plant, since 1952. Airstream sells many of its trailers to US customers but also ships them to countries around the world.
Custom, high-end furniture like pool and shuffleboard tables, home bars, and bar stools are signature products of Custom House. All furniture and accessories are made to order at the company's Sacramento factory, in operation since 1953.
Based in Chicago, Heritage Bicycles makes bikes that are the only completely Chicago-made bicycles that are a point of pride for the company. The company has successfully made bicycles completely manufactured in Chicago, in spite of the fact that Schwinn ceased production in the city in the 1970s.
This iconic Freeport, Maine retailer, made famous by its duck boot design, has made those boots in the US since 1912. Not all its products are made in America, but over 500 items on L. L. Bean's website can claim to be Made in the USA. These products include shoes, tote bags, pillows, rugs, and furniture.
Cast iron cookware has been made in South Pittsburg, Tennessee from 1896 through today. Lodge Manufacturing is still owned and managed by descendants of founder Joseph Lodge, and continues to manufacture the cast iron skillets that are treasured by both chefs and consumers.
Based in Cleveland, Ohio, Vitamix still designs, builds, and tests high-performance blenders in the US. The company continues to have a very loyal following and is credited with creating an "infomercial" as early as 1949.
Famed American manufacturer, Zippo's windproof lighters may not have changed much in over 78 years, yet their design remains relevant. Colorful new versions of the basic concept are created and manufactured in the US each year, along with related accessories.
US manufacturing is the greatest force behind domestic GDP. Manufacturing provides employment and supports effective economic development.
The most successful companies in their industries are expected to pioneer innovation and expand their market share, as the global demand for manufactured goods increases annually. If these leading American companies and others find new ways of manufacturing to keep their production in the US, or follow the projected trend toward reshoring, we can expect others to follow, leading the American economy to boom in the not-so-distant future.
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