Saturday, December 20, 2008

New Department - Union Made in the USA

Our descriptions usually note if union made goods are offered at a location and we've decided to gather up such sites and duplicate them in a new department -Union Made in the USA This will permit visitors to more easily browse and shop products made by union workers.

Union workers tend to understand well the value of manufacturing in the US and they also tend to shop wisely in the marketplace for US made goods.

Many commercial goods, which aren't listed on our site, are made by union workers. There is a considerable amount of consumer goods that are made by union workers so this new department will expand in the future. Presently, there is a sampling of a number of consumer products that visitors can browse.

I suspect often consumers don't realize how many well liked products are union made. The EMCO storm doors you may have purchased for your home - made by union workers. If there's Land 'O Lakes butter in your refrigerator - it's union made. And if there's a Bradford White water heater delivering hot water for your shower in the morning - that's union made.


When I first started work on our site, during verification there was a union made urban tee & sweatpants that caught my eye. I ordered them and when they arrived I marvelled at those garments. I'm so accustomed to US made quality, yet I found my new purchases impressive. The tee was heavyweight, soft cotton, expertly stitched. The sweatpants were also heavyweight, fleece lined, double stitched and had 2 large side pockets. They are so snugly warm and they look great.

Out of curiosity I went to Amazon and searched for sweatpants. I found them. They were imported, lightweight and had no pockets. They were $18.00 - just what I paid for my union made domestic pair. Neither was sale priced.

The maker of my sweatpants was Eagle USA and they made a profit on my purchase and paid union workers. I can't help but wonder what the profit margin was for that foreign manufacturer who had much less in labor & material costs. There was no savings for the consumer, but there was a larger profit margin for the manufacturer.

Somewhere there was a shopper on Amazon that bought those imported sweatpants. Possibly they thought they got a deal. Foreign manufacturers and retailers promote the notion that consumers will find savings with imported goods. US made products are so expensive, right?

Wrong. That poor Amazon shopper will probably be on their third or fourth pair of sweatpants in the time it takes me to wear through these. That shopper may have spent $18.00 on their pair, but I invested $18.00 in mine.

The first time I used our site when live was to reorder these sweatpants in other colors. I wanted a good source for Eagle USA which has a Dealer Locator but I discovered that by using a search engine and searching Eagle USA with the style number of the garment I wanted, I could usually snag the item at a retailer. This is when I discovered my sweatpants on StitchXpress for $16.44 available in 10 colors. Well now, I can buy union made in the USA for less than imported. Does this mean more whining from foreign manufacturers about competition?

Sadly, some folks think union wages add to the cost of products. As an American manufacturer I understand well the distribution of profit behind the ultimate price to the consumer. The presence of union workers in US manufacturing explains only the value & craftsmanship found in the products they produce.

Did you, the consumer, believe that companies moved production abroad with an altruistic intent to pass on the savings to you?

I offer my appreciation to whichever of my fellow Americans made my tee and sweatpants. I've often laughed aloud in stores at poorly made imported goods but I've always owned US made sweatpants and these are the nicest I've ever owned. The stitching is expert & they launder extremely well. The long trip to the mailbox is much easier to brave this winter with this fleece lining. I've hauled pet toys, mail, paperwork and several cans of soda in these huge pockets. You've artfully mastered product quality, value & customer satisfaction. You're the competition the foreign manufacturers whined about, aren't you? The best they could do was match the price while coming nowhere close to matching the quality. (Bless their hearts, they think they can compete with you.)

Now I can ponder whether those foreign manufacturers are simply enriching themselves by manufacturing abroad or if perhaps they're just terribly inefficient operations unlike domestic manufacturers with union employees...

Mary - web person for