We’re unveiling our 2021 Made in America Holiday Gift Guide on Monday, Nov. 22! To prepare, here are 10 reasons to buy American-made.
The sun is setting earlier, it’s getting colder, and the red cups are back in Starbucks, so y’all know what that means: The holiday season is officially upon us!
For however you celebrate, we know the odds are high you’re probably working through your holiday shopping list right now to get gifts for your friends, family, or maybe just yourself. But before you load up Amazon or head over to Walmart, consider buying American this holiday season.
On Monday, we are scheduled to release the 2021 Made in America Holiday Gift Guide, which will shine a spotlight on more than 100 companies that make their products in the United States. But if you’re still on the fence about why you should buy American this holiday season, check out the list below.
Reason No. 1: Support Local Businesses
When you buy American, you have a chance to support local businesses in a way you never could if you bought something imported. Local businesses are the backbone of our communities, keeping people employed and contributing back to the people where they’re based. So rather than look afar, head down the street and see what people in your community are selling — chances are that you’ll find a great gift for whatever occasion!
Reason No. 2: Create American Jobs
Buying American supports American jobs, plain and simple. When you buy something Made in America, your dollars are going toward someone’s salary, helping them keep food on the table and provide for their family. One study found that if every American spent $64 on Made in USA items this season, it could create 200,000 new jobs. Given that Americans are expected to spend around $700 a year on gifts, it seems like something many of us can do that will make a real difference.
Reason No. 3: Avoid Supply Chain Crunches
Be careful: if you weren’t planning on buying American this holiday season, you may find yourself scrambling. That’s because supply chain shortages have made it more difficult to buy things that have to be shipped from abroad — especially from China. With container ships stuck waiting outside ports, you don’t want to risk not having your gift on time because it’s stuck idling in the Pacific. So instead, buy local and guarantee that your gift will be on time for the holidays.
Reason No. 4: Buy Ethically-Sourced Products
When you buy products made abroad, your purchase is subject to the labor laws of the country where it’s produced. Depending where that country is, you run the risk that the gift you’re buying this holiday season has been made in a sweatshop by inhumanely treated workers — or even forced labor. Really puts a damper on the festive spirit, huh! Fortunately, when you buy American-made, you know that the product is made following the guidelines of American labor laws. And if it’s a union-made product, even better.
Reason No. 5: Better Quality
American-made products are known for being of a higher quality than cheap foreign imports. That’s because many American manufacturers explicitly emphasize quality in a way that foreign producers don’t always do. American-made products are built to last.
Reason No. 6: Protect the Environment
American manufacturers abide by some of the highest environmental standards in the world, from the big items — American-made steel is so much more is cleaner than the competition — to individual products that keep the environment in mind. American companies also use more clean energy than much of the foreign competition. Plus, buying local means you aren’t purchasing something shipped halfway around the world, which also damages the environment. So, if you want to make sure that your holiday gift is green this year, make sure that it’s also got a red, white and blue Made in America label too.
Reason No. 7: Boosts the Economy
Shopping is a major boost for the U.S. economy. When consumers go to stores, the dollars spent move around and are redistributed to others — so your holiday shopping is an important way to put extra holiday cash in everyone’s pockets. But when you buy goods made abroad, some of those dollars go abroad, and end up helping foreign economies instead of our own. Instead, consider buying American to help American businesses grow and invest more, and that the economy all of us Americans are dependent on continues to grow and provide favorable conditions.
Reason. No. 8: Builds Community
What’s more wholesome than going to the neighborhood store and having a conversation with the clerk and other shoppers? In the digital age, it’s way too easy to be isolated from our community. But buying American-made products connects you to those in your community (our Made in America Holiday Gift Guide sorts items by state for this very reason).
Reason No. 9: Secures the Future for the Children
I don’t want to scare anyone, but here’s the truth: if no one buys American made goods, companies are going to stop making them. That means fewer jobs for future generations of Americans, and a poorer economic outlook as businesses shutter. So think forward with your holiday shopping list — its an opportunity to support American-made goods that will keep thriving for generations to come, and ensure a prosperous future for our kids to turn to when they start looking for jobs someday soon.
Reason No. 10: Supports Entrepreneurship
There’s a lot of innovative, American-made companies that are started by talented entrepreneurs with a passion for making things. The proof: 90% of all new patents, and for nearly a third of all private-sector research and development, comes from manufacturing. America is really good at inventing stuff — and we should be making that stuff here, too! Let’s support the companies that do just that this holiday season.
So, did this list convince you to buy American this holiday season? Any reason that you plan to shop American-made that we didn’t hit on here? Let us know on Twitter via @KeepitMadeinUSA… and stay tuned for the 2021 Made in America Holiday Gift Guide on Monday.