"My conscience is clear," he stated. "And those are things we didn't see 10 years ago when we made the decision not to go overseas. As it turns out, the quality of the product coming from China is uneven to say the least, and unsafe on some occasions, and their accepted work practices would not pass muster in this country."
WHY SELL 'MADE IN THE U.S.A.'?
Ellis enjoys competing with importers and has many stories of overseas orders that went wrong. One distributor prepaid for 35,000 folios from a Chinese factory and received the wrong item less than a week before a client's event. A retailer bought 120,000 bracelets designed for preteen girls that contained significant amounts of cadmium. Those sold had to be recalled and the remaining stock was useless. "I love being able to deliver the product the client wants, done properly, and shipped and completed on time," Ellis said. "So yes, I love competing with imports. It's both from a product-safety perspective and a customer-service perspective."
The quick turnaround is the biggest benefit of buying U.S. made, Denny added. Importers not only have longer ship times, but also do not always have the needed item in stock. "The ability to manufacture here allows us to make whatever is needed," he said. We do orders every day for large quantities that we don't have in stock, and our customer never knows because we mold more while we're preparing the art."
Another reason for choosing American made is the unknown that may come with imports, Ellis noted, citing an importing supplier once received a lip balm order that was not labeled with flavors. "So I asked the national sales manager of this company, 'If you don't know what the flavor is, what else do you not know about the lip balms?' Many distributors would be extremely reluctant to sell anything that goes on the body that is not American-made in origin with our highly sophisticated regulatory apparatus that we have in place," he said.