Readers Respond: The Made-in-the-USA trend

"We are a single store that has recently won the Best of Long Island (N.Y.) award for a hardware store. Since there are 3 million people on Long Island, we are very proud of that. One of the things we strive for besides unmatched customer service and having products in stock when others don’t is having unique items.

"One unfortunate thing we found was ‘Made in the USA’ was becoming a unique thing. We now have a program in the store where we identify on each hook if an item is Made in the USA. We use a simple Made in the USA sticker placed onto the scanning tag. When we were at the 2010 National Hardware Show, we noticed that domestic manufacturers were placing more of an emphasis on being made here in the USA. 

“We also found that customers are willing to pay a higher price on an item if they see it is made here in the USA. That is something we did not think we would see, especially in a down economy, but many see it as helping their own." 
— George Uribe
L.I. Hardware

"[Made in the USA] will be a part of our 2011 marketing campaign. We will highlight products that are 'Made in the USA' by stickers attached to the product shelf labeling, and identifying them in our circular and radio promotions."  
— Tom Hardman

"We have found our customers prefer Made in the USA. Partly for patriotic reasons, but mainly because they are smart enough to know that price is comparable, quality is as good or better, and delivery and in-stock positions are much better. 

“Any U.S. company that is following Lean principles will be able to deliver products better. No one has yet to perfect any software to accurately plan for three-month delivery times versus domestic-finished goods positions. Those companies that import and have good fill rates also have too much inventory, which is a true carrying cost. Bottom line: Why do global auto makers build factories close to their customers?"
— Randy Boonstra