The outsourcing of jobs to foreign countries has been a constant presence for U.S. politicians, pundits, and the H.R. departments as they lay off Americans in recent years. The perception among consumers is that pretty much nothing is made in America anymore. And anything that is, isn’t totally high-quality.
This, of course, is completely bogus. While plenty of jobs have been shipped out of the country, there many companies that do all they can to make quality products and proudly hoist the "Made in America" banner. Those companies now have a major cheerleader in the American Brand Project, a patriotic social startup that rates just how American different companies are in order to help consumers make informed decisions on what to buy.
It's early days yet for the project, which launched on — when else? — July 4th. The goal is to get people nominating their favorite U.S.-based brands, in addition to boosting job growth, celebrating American businesses and entrepreneurialism, and change people’s misperception about the perceived shortage of quality of U.S.-made goods and services.
The group is searching for American companies and brand enthusiasts to and tells share their stories to encourage sales of their products. As its Facebook page states, "American Brand Project is a social vehicle to learn and share stories about great American companies that are succeeding right here in the good old USA."
"We had the perception, like many others, that quality products really were not manufactured in the U.S. anymore," founder Christian Mouritzen tells the Huffington Post. "Luckily, we were proven severely wrong. As we started looking around, we found lots of great companies producing great products, but many of them were not telling their stories very well."
Naturally, ABP had to comment on the uproar over Ralph Lauren outsourcing its Team USA Olympics apparel manufacturing to China:
"Keep in mind that each set of formal clothing has retail price (yep you can go buy it) of $1200+ for men and $950+ for women (the men's blazer alone is $750). Certainly there is enough margin in those prices to source the most patriotic clothing possible in the United States. Grr"