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Old 11-10-2012, 10:29 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
17,415 posts, read 16,099,852 times
Reputation: 17279

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Quote:
Originally Posted by boxus View Post
They can produce the same quality anywhere, it is just a matter of doing so. It does not have to be American made to be quality. A company can make the same item anywhere, Carhartt is just leveraging "buy American" so they can ask a premium price for it. Plus, stating only their American made stuff is quality means the rest of it is garbage.

A company can make the same quality anywhere, it is just a matter of effort.
I have not found this to be the case with many cheap foreign made products. Tools that break after light us, electronics that won't function right out of the box, TVs that suddenly go "poof" after a couple years... And yes, general purpose work cloths that are clearly lacking in quality, and don't stand the test of time on the job. If I could get the same quality for a cheaper price, I would, but as most consumers recognize... You get what you pay for. You can also get quality products from China, but they are often times not significantly cheaper than other high quality products made in other countries such as America, Canada, or other high COL countries in Europe. Quality costs money, like it or not.

That "premium price" has always existed when it comes to higher quality products. There's plenty of knock off Rolexes on the market if that's your thing, but I certainly wouldn't consider it on par with the real deal.

Carhart is simply offering a product that the customer knows will excel in it's functionality and comfort. The American made product is made here for a reason... They have a reputation for turning out high quality products consistently, and the customer knows they can count on every item meeting their expectations. You can get quality products made in China, but consistently? Roll the dice and find out. I'd rather pay the premium and know I'm getting what I'm paying for. When I don't have to replace the item repeatedly, I'm actually saving money in the long run.
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Old 11-11-2012, 10:01 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
26,278 posts, read 44,073,380 times
Reputation: 29903
Admittedly there are (and WERE) quite a few QUALITY operations / products in USA. AND in most cases the workers were rightfully proud of their contributions to their employer / country. There is a significant Value in a Company Culture that reinforces QUALITY and pride of workmanship. (especially obvious to me as I have worked 30 yrs with manufacturing companies throughout the world to KEEP / instill that culture)

Too bad USA Executive Staffs haven't been able to do their part to keep the companies innovative and disciplined profitability. The company money that USED to be used to retain expertise / new markets / profit sharing; has been flowing to the CEO's, social engineering, and Golden Parachutes. Companies lose focus of their core business, and they go broke chasing their tails (or often elusive PROFIT).

So it goes with politics... There is little accountability and VERY short memories in the USA. and LOTS if un-earned trust.
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Old 11-11-2012, 11:28 AM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
17,415 posts, read 16,099,852 times
Reputation: 17279
Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
Admittedly there are (and WERE) quite a few QUALITY operations / products in USA. AND in most cases the workers were rightfully proud of their contributions to their employer / country. There is a significant Value in a Company Culture that reinforces QUALITY and pride of workmanship. (especially obvious to me as I have worked 30 yrs with manufacturing companies throughout the world to KEEP / instill that culture)

Too bad USA Executive Staffs haven't been able to do their part to keep the companies innovative and disciplined profitability. The company money that USED to be used to retain expertise / new markets / profit sharing; has been flowing to the CEO's, social engineering, and Golden Parachutes. Companies lose focus of their core business, and they go broke chasing their tails (or often elusive PROFIT).

So it goes with politics... There is little accountability and VERY short memories in the USA. and LOTS if un-earned trust.
I have had my heart broken far too many times by large U.S. companies that USED to stand for quality... All they stand for today are max profits at the expense of quality. They have forgotten what made these brands successful in the first place, and it wasn't throwing quality (and their customers) under the bus so they could suck all the money at the top. It's pretty sad when I have to look to buy my tools from European manufacturers because the American ones no longer offer the quality I demand. I lost faith when vice grips and Nicholson files no longer offered a made in America option. I'll do my part by refusing to buy these products again unless they PROVE they can still make a quality item.

Already tried the vice grip option, complete trash. Three different styles all for $13. The rubber grips fell off almost immediately. If they made a quality set, they would not require the grips, but since the design was awful, they do require some sort of extra support. One set broke after the 2nd use. The other set had it's spring pop loose. For what it was worth, I didn't even bother to look for it. The final set that came in the package I gave away. Even though the individual who received the remaining vice grip didn't pay anything, I feel they still got ripped off. Not even worth the time giving this garbage a chance.
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Old 11-11-2012, 01:37 PM
 
18,094 posts, read 15,450,272 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andywire View Post
I have not found this to be the case with many cheap foreign made products. Tools that break after light us, electronics that won't function right out of the box, TVs that suddenly go "poof" after a couple years... And yes, general purpose work cloths that are clearly lacking in quality, and don't stand the test of time on the job. If I could get the same quality for a cheaper price, I would, but as most consumers recognize... You get what you pay for. You can also get quality products from China, but they are often times not significantly cheaper than other high quality products made in other countries such as America, Canada, or other high COL countries in Europe. Quality costs money, like it or not.

That "premium price" has always existed when it comes to higher quality products. There's plenty of knock off Rolexes on the market if that's your thing, but I certainly wouldn't consider it on par with the real deal.

Carhart is simply offering a product that the customer knows will excel in it's functionality and comfort. The American made product is made here for a reason... They have a reputation for turning out high quality products consistently, and the customer knows they can count on every item meeting their expectations. You can get quality products made in China, but consistently? Roll the dice and find out. I'd rather pay the premium and know I'm getting what I'm paying for. When I don't have to replace the item repeatedly, I'm actually saving money in the long run.
The geographic location of a factory has nothing to do with quality.

American made had a perception of quality because it was an American company, not the location of the factory. Nothing prevents an American company from having quality products made in China other than the company's own policies.

This is why I stated what I did about Carhartt; they are just going demand premium price for something on the basis of where it is made, not that the physical location of where something is made has anything to do with the quality of the product. Carhartt can implement the same quality standards at any of its factories, it chooses not to, has nothing to do with where those factories are located at.
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Old 11-11-2012, 02:25 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
17,415 posts, read 16,099,852 times
Reputation: 17279
Quote:
Originally Posted by boxus View Post
The geographic location of a factory has nothing to do with quality.

American made had a perception of quality because it was an American company, not the location of the factory. Nothing prevents an American company from having quality products made in China other than the company's own policies.

This is why I stated what I did about Carhartt; they are just going demand premium price for something on the basis of where it is made, not that the physical location of where something is made has anything to do with the quality of the product. Carhartt can implement the same quality standards at any of its factories, it chooses not to, has nothing to do with where those factories are located at.
And I am saying if they could get the same quality in China, they would have shipped all the production that way years ago. Obviously, there is something stopping them. That "premium" is the price they pay to hire American workers, who must be paid a wage to reflect the higher COL. More than likely, their profit margin is no larger than if they had the work done in China, because in such a case, they could sell the items significantly cheaper.

There are many other American companies that make cloths in this country, but not nearly as much as in previous decades. This reflects the demands of the consumer, many of whom have seen their incomes stagnate. People demand cheap, and that is fine. That's what China is good for. Some people also demand items to suit their needs, and in Carhartt's case, their consumer base demands rugged, resilient clothing that can withstand the abuse of typical blue collar work. The consumer is willing to pay more because they know the cloths will outlast other brands, and they will match their needs in terms of comfort, dependability and longevity. I have bought several used items that are Carhartt brand, and they really are the best thing on the market that I have come across. They withstand stretching, abrasion, heat, solvent and even spark exposure better than anything I have tried. Their all cotton cloths are worth every penny.

I believe China will continue to progress and get better in other areas including textile and clothing. As it stands today, their mainstay is bulk production work with an emphasis on value, and less on quality. Trying to get quality items is possible in China, but you still pay a premium for it. Consumers who demand higher quality know this, but they also know they are treading black waters when trying to buy China. In many cases, it's much simpler and wiser to buy a higher quality item made in other developed nations instead of rolling the dice on Chinese made goods. I have bought several high end tools that were Chinese made. Some worked and I got a great buy, but others really burned me when the item did not function as intended. I'd rather pay a little more and buy the European or American made item that I know will match my needs, and also include superb customer service and a warranty. You just don't get that with enough Chinese made goods to make it worth the risk.

And since you don't seem to know much about the way things are made, and how prices are established for items... Since Carhartt is making smaller quantities for their American made consumer base, they have to charge more just to break even. Smaller production runs always come with a higher price tag per order. Much of this has to do with the cost that goes into setting up a production line for a job. That cost must be divided up into the number of items produced. If you're producing fewer items, there are fewer items to carry this total cost. It's not a matter of "charging a premium", it's a matter of operational costs and breaking even. No one starts a business to go out of business.

Even still, if the consumer wants a cheaper priced item that may lack in quality, Carhartt still caters to that market as well. The consumer is free to vote with their dollars. As always, you get what you pay for. I vote for American, Canadian and European made items when my job depends on it, and that includes many work cloths. I'm paid relative to the quality of my work, and I can't perform quality work without high quality (and expensive) items.
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Old 11-11-2012, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
17,415 posts, read 16,099,852 times
Reputation: 17279
I believe it's also worth noting... Since Carhartt's higher end line has a reputation for quality, and they must charge a higher price regardless of labor costs, the potential market is somewhat limited. Demand is very cyclical. If potential consumers aren't working, or are not earning enough to justify purchasing their higher end items, demand for this line will plummet. You simply cannot overproduce higher priced items, which often require higher priced commodities and require higher paid workers (even in China). Also consider that unsold inventory becomes a tax liability at the end of the year. Knowing the business, it probably makes much more sense to have these items made in America, where they can be on the store shelves in a week, rather than months. It makes much more sense to produce these items close to the consumer where production levels can match the actual demand for the product. IMHO, I believe this is why so many manufacturing jobs have returned to America in the past 3 years.
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:59 PM
 
Location: Planet Eaarth
8,955 posts, read 18,554,676 times
Reputation: 7193
After reading the replies I have to wonder how many actually watched the video.

I only used Carhartt as a simple example (and they had a video that said what I would have liked to) of good old fashioned blue collar work ethic. It was a not an attempt to sell Carhartt goods in any way.

It's really unbelievable how people can be such kill joys and sad sacks to demean this simple message.
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Old 11-12-2012, 12:04 AM
 
6,587 posts, read 2,854,266 times
Reputation: 5569
Quote:
Originally Posted by boxus View Post
The geographic location of a factory has nothing to do with quality.

American made had a perception of quality because it was an American company, not the location of the factory. Nothing prevents an American company from having quality products made in China other than the company's own policies.

This is why I stated what I did about Carhartt; they are just going demand premium price for something on the basis of where it is made, not that the physical location of where something is made has anything to do with the quality of the product. Carhartt can implement the same quality standards at any of its factories, it chooses not to, has nothing to do with where those factories are located at.

Funny thing............I'm still searching for that "made in China " quality line.........got a link?
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Old 11-16-2012, 05:02 PM
 
22,770 posts, read 27,539,711 times
Reputation: 14610
this particular line of clothing looks to be mostly socks.
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Old 11-16-2012, 06:10 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
17,415 posts, read 16,099,852 times
Reputation: 17279
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffdoorgunner View Post
Funny thing............I'm still searching for that "made in China " quality line.........got a link?
You can get quality in China. It's very hit or miss, and it still isn't cheap. The same rule applies to products made in China... You get what you pay for. I have bought a few tools recently that were from a German company. Surprisingly, the box stated "made in China". Still cost a pretty penny, and they weren't any better of a value than the American made and European made competitors which I also trusted. The products were clearly well made, and they met my expectations none the less.

I've got nothing against honest companies in China making high quality products for the world. I love the free market no matter where it is, and who benefits. And if consumers demand low quality, cheap, easily breakable crap, than it makes sense to go to the country that has the lowest labor rates and ease of doing business. Inevitably though, China will realize there is more money in making the high quality stuff that consumers are willing to pay more for, just like Japan did.
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