There is a big thrust by the Federal Government of the USA to push for MADE IN THE USA label, to be enhanced by our powers in the White House, Department of Commerce and the USTR (United States Trade Representative) Office. The Department of Commerce is a Cabinet position, and the USTR is a body that works at the behest of the President of the United States, and is an Ambassador ranked position, they are sending their Representatives to Los Angeles, California to meet with the top members of the Textile/Apparel manufacturers this month and holding a summit.
What can the USA Government do for our Textile/Apparel Industry to assist in having more production that is now outsourced to be made in our USA region?
They did not go to New York, or the Carolinas, Florida, but to Southern California, where the largest population, and largest volume of our Textile/Apparel Industry in the USA is located.
For Your Information:
- The State of California is the 6th largest economyin world;
- The County of Los Angeles which is 10,000,000 people, 4000 square miles, is the 13th largest economy in the world;
- The Textile/Apparel/Accessories Industry, and its professional services consist of over 1,000,000 people, and is the largest Employer in the State of California;
- We have the largest quantity of knitting machinery in Southern California over 18,000 machines;
- Over 5,500 sewing contractors;
- Over 6,000 manufacturers located here selling into the USA retail market place;
- Over 50% of all imported Textile/Apparel that comes into the USA enters through Los Angeles and Long Beach Ports;
- Mexico which is just trucking distance across our borders, is our 3rd largest Textile/Apparel Industry trading partner, and equal transportation time to either East Coast or West Coast cities;
[bleft]MADE IN THE USA and YANKEE INGENUITY will not change outsourcing or importing, but it will change what IMPORTERS will be making offshore. [/bleft]
Finally if you take all the main producing locations in the USA, such as New York, Florida, Carolinas, Texas, Illinois, Pennsylvania, all together does not employ or reach the volume of California.
This is why the USA is holding their meeting here in about a week. What is happening is, there is the skilled labor already here, there is the availability of machinery, power, and space to hold and sustain double or more than what is already located in Southern California.
These Government officials have the authority to make our bank’s loan money to start new or expand existing facilities at very low interest rates, (to those that have the credentials and experience), that normally in these economic times they would not lend.
Since the retailers want “QUICK RESPONSE”, and do not want to carry inventory, and because of the need for “JUST IN TIME” delivery, the FASHION, moderate to luxury price lines have a chance to satisfy the retailers’ needs, and not have to take LONG LEAD TIMES, to import their product.
When you do full proper costing, and take into consideration all the variables of the actual cost of importing product, (normally without capturing re-orders), the higher costs of labor here in the USA, will not raise the cost of the product where you lose gross margins, and the retailer still has product to sell at saleable prices.
This ‘Made in the USA’ concept is being requested already by JCP, MACY’S, Green EGO apparel retailers, and other large department stores throughout the market place.
We know certain commodity items such as T-Shirts are being requested, and with some of the newest technology and engineering, there is almost no human labor in manufacturing this item, and it is in this item they are requesting ‘Made in the USA’ label.
The Government of USA must put people to work, and it is the small and midsize firms, that employes people, and we are not a socialistic form of Government (at least not yet!), so to create jobs, it is the private sector that must do the hiring.
Though our economy has been transitioning from a production economy to a service economy, we still have the best trained or trainable workers in the world… Just ask the Japanese automakers who have built plants here in the USA, on how they have benefited from being closer to market and offering “Just in Time Delivery”, while also making large profits!