Made in the USA: Quality, Speed and Innovation

By February 13, 2008Economy

pop_cvr-reg.jpgDrew Greenblatt at Marlin Steel Wire passes on a really fine article in the March issue of Popular Mechanics, “Made in the USA.” As the blurb states, “A funny thing happened to America’s industrial meltdown — the country started making and selling more goods than ever. How did companies do it? With quality, speed and innovation.”

The article features:

  • Bulldozers, manufactured by Caterpillar in Peoria, Ill.
  • Wire baskets, produced by Marlin Steel Wire in Baltimore, Md.
  • Televisions, by Syntax-Brillian in Tempe, Az.
  • Farm equipment, manufactured by Case IH in Racine, Wisc. (including flexible fuel tractors).
  • Racing bikes, by American Bicycle Group in Ooltewah, Tenn.
  • Reporter Phaedra Hise observes,

    America’s manufacturing sales stagnated at the $4 trillion mark in the late 1990s. But then something surprising happened. America started selling again — finding more customers for tractors, steel, plastics, kinves and medicines than ever before. Manufacturing sales hit a record $5 trillion in 2006, according ot the U.S. Census Bureau. ‘People talk about a doomsday scenario for manufacturing, but that’s not the case,’ says Vinod Singhal, a professor at Georgia Institute of Technology’s College of Management. ‘The best U.S. manufacturers have become more competitive, no doubt about it.’

    The article is not online (yet?), but it’s well worth taking a look at as some saluatory reporting amid the all-too-common pessimism.

    And thanks, Drew!

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