How Are Those Tariffs Helping USA-Made Products?

American Apparel was one of the few major imprintable mills that manufactured all of their products in the United States—in California, no less. However, the company was forced into bankruptcy due to bad management and was acquired by the Canadian textile conglomerate Gildan.

Almost immediately, the company began offering American Apparel “worldwide” products that were manufactured at an offshore facility and are available for a lower price than the USA-made. The idea was that you could get an American Apparel–style product at a lower price than a USA-made product.

With the US and China raising tariffs on each other over the last year, I offer one data point about how this is working out. American Apparel announced two broad changes to their pricing, effective December 31, 2018:

  • all products made in the USA will be more expensive.
  • selected products manufactured outside of the US will be less expensive.

Let the logic of that sink in…

The full announcement was sent to wholesale customers in an email, but the message—all of it plain text—was sent in an image. (Sidebar: why are people doing that again?)  You can see the image of the announcement included in this post.

December 7, 2018
Dear Valued Customer,
In our continued effort to provide customers with quality products offering the best price and value, we are announcing the following pricing actions to take effect on December 31, 2018:
- A price decrease on selected imported styles
- A price increase on our line of U.S. made styles

Complete details on this action including an adjustment summary and price list will be provided by your American Apparel Sales Executive, or visible on the website. Please note that any backorders with ship dates prior to December 31, 2018 will be honored at the old price.
We appreciate your continued support of the American Apparel brand.

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