One Way to Stay Afloat During a Trade War: Buy Products Made in the USA

September 28, 2020

In 2019, imported goods declined 1.7% overall, the first decrease in three years. This decline was in large part due to the U.S. tariffs placed on goods from China and other foreign countries.

The Commerce Department announced in March of 2020 that the trade deficit had dropped 6.7%, to $45.3 billion. Experts say further decreases are likely as the coronavirus outbreak continues to disrupt the flow of goods and services.

Managing Supply Chain Risk and Disruption

The ongoing uncertainty fueled by the trade war has many companies exploring how they can mitigate the risk of disruption to their supply chains. When it comes to consumer goods, American companies are realizing that they have become too reliant on imports.

Overall, about 20% of the retail supply chain was heavily dependent on China, Cowen analyst Oliver Chen told CNBC. Footwear companies, for example, were “greatly” impacted by supply chain issues and have had to quickly diversify their resources base, he said.

This has also left many companies realizing that it is possible to not only reduce risk, but also create a competitive advantage by leveraging trade uncertainty to optimize their supply chains and keep production in America. By committing to manufacturing right here in the U.S., companies can:

  • Make compliance easier
  • Recover and adapt to a changing environment more easily
  • Provide better network flexibility

Looking for the Competitive Advantage

Diminishing the impact of international trade on a global company’s supply chain is one way to increase its competitiveness and strengthen its adaptability. While leaders of global supply chains are traditionally focused on the bottom line, one study shows that about a third of all executives on earnings conference calls have recently cited trade issues as a potential headwind.

Leaders are seeing how responding proactively to these issues can create an opportunity to capture market share and industry profits. According to Consumer Reports, almost 8 in 10 American consumers say they would rather buy an American-made product than an imported one, and more than 60% say they’re even willing to pay 10% more for it.

This is arguably more true today than it has been before, as COVID-19 has exposed the importance of keeping industrial manufacturing in the U.S.

U.S. companies that buy domestically can have a more reliable product supply and are able to offer their customers American-made goods, while supporting the U.S. economy and its workers. Now, more than ever, that is much needed and much appreciated.

Boise Paper is Made in the USA – Today and Always
Boise Paper has always been committed to U.S. manufacturing. For decades, Boise Paper employees have been making our products United States. We proudly support U.S. jobs and local economies, employing more than 1,000 men and women at our mills. This commitment to producing all of our products in America enables us to provide products made with consistent high quality and deliver a supply chain that customers can rely on.


“U.S. Trade Deficit Narrows in 2019 for First Time in Six Years,” Reuters; “Build a Resilient Supply Chain amid U.S.-China Trade War,” Gartner; U.S. Trade Deficit Narrows in January; Exports, Imports Fall,” CNBC; “Trade War and Coronavirus Show Retail Supply Chains Are Too Dependent on China, ex-Macy’s CEO says,” CNBC

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