When we asked msnbc.com readers to tell us about their favorite products that are made in America, we received hundreds and hundreds of responses.
Some offered humorous examples — babies and corrupt politicians among them — while others lamented that they were having a hard time coming up with a product that is still made in the the United States.
In most cases, the companies readers named make some products in the United States but also rely on manufacturers in other countries to produce certain product lines or lower-priced items.
Red Wing Shoe Co. makes many of its Red Wing-branded boots in the United States, for example, but also uses overseas suppliers for some of those boots, as well as for footwear that it sells under brand names such as Carhartt.
Spokesman Peter Engel said manufacturing overseas allows the company to offer customers a lower-priced option.
“We wish we were all made in America but, you know, some consumers can’t afford a $200 work boot,” he said.
The Homer Laughlin China Co. is committed to making all of its Fiesta dinnerware in the United States, but when the company decided to branch out into flatware it found that the only U.S. manufacturer was a direct competitor.
“The flatware is manufactured overseas simply because we couldn’t find anyone in the United States that could do it,” spokesman Dan Williams said.
In addition, not all “made in USA” products are made by a U.S. company.
Many, many readers told us that their favorite domestically manufactured product is their vehicle — including quite a few who wrote in about cars that are made in the United States by foreign companies.
That shouldn’t come as a surprise. Cars.com’s 2009 list of the top American-made cars gave its highest ranking to the Toyota Camry. The Web site bases its ranking on sales, where the car’s parts are made and whether the car is assembled in America, and it excludes models scheduled to be discontinued.
Check out this Made in America? Maybe to see a sampling of readers’ favorite products, and to find out whether they are, in fact, still made in America.
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