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Results of a new Thomas survey reveal that 62 percent of Americans prefer to buy products made in the United States. Although 55 percent consider the quality of American-made products superior to products made in Asia or Central America, 57 percent believe that products made in Europe are typically of the same quality as those made in the United States.
The second-annual “Manufacturing Perception Report” examined Americans’ perceptions about the manufacturing industry, including sustainability and tariffs, as well as whether they plan to pursue a career in the sector.
“Since the skills gap is one of the biggest issues the industry is facing, it’s good to see that 60 percent of survey respondents would likely encourage someone entering the workforce to pursue a career in manufacturing,” said Tony Uphoff, Thomas president and CEO. “In reality, there has never been a more exciting time for industry, as output is at an all-time high and job growth continues to rise.”
Among the survey’s other findings were that 95 percent of respondents believe that manufacturing is important to the U.S. economy, although only 25 percent think the current state of the industry is either growing or stable.
Three-fourths of respondents reported that sustainability has a very important impact on the goods and services they purchase, while 79 percent of Americans feel government funding should be used to support apprenticeship initiatives.
A combined total of 87 percent of survey participants think a strong manufacturing sector is very or at least somewhat important to national security, and nearly half feel increasing tariffs on imported foreign goods and services is too disruptive for the U.S. economy.
“We are pleased to see the value of American manufactured brands remains strong, which matches the overall positive trends we’re seeing in the U.S. manufacturing industry,” said Uphoff.
The online study polled more than 1,000 participants across the United States. Participants were over the age of 18 and represented a broad range in income, geographic location and gender.
For more information, visit www.thomasnet.com.