For most of the past decade, the majority of the most popular promotional products have been coming from China. When you are looking at the big categories, including writing instruments, drinkware, bags, and computer accessories, you’ll find that most are manufactured in China, and then decorated here in the USA. It just made the most sense in terms of economy.
But the tide is turning. China’s workers began demanding a living wage, and are now earning much more than just a couple of years ago. The vast difference between Chinese and American currency values has also begun to equalize. On top of this, American operating efficiencies are rapidly improving.
According to a recent article in Bloomberg Businessweek, it has become common for American and Chinese sources to be about equal in cost. Quicker production times, from eliminating ocean shipping, bring an additional advantage to the idea of buying American.
APTCO works with a large network of promotional suppliers who customize products to suit the marketing objectives of our clients. And while many of these are still imported as blank products, we’re finding more and more manufacturing being done here. This can be a good fit for many marketing programs where American-made fits well with the theme of a promotion.