Many products are getting smaller due to ‘shrinkflation’, for example Mars shrank its Maltesers, M&Ms by up to 15%. In the past, companies blamed the rising price of raw materials. Recently, these prices dropped back, but the shrinkage continued as manufacturers try to stealthily boost profits.
Products made in Japan were ridiculed and thought to be low quality until 1950 when The New York Times reported the excellence of Nikon cameras during the Korean war with the headline “Japanese camera”.
The first “Made in …” label was created in 1887 in England to discourage foreign goods and to encourage consumption of domestic-made goods; this ultimately backfired when Britons bought more goods made in Germany than domestic made ones.
Roughly one out of every three pair of socks you wear was made in a place known as “Sock City”. A small Chinese village in the 1980s it has grown to employ over 100,000 people and produces 8 billion socks a year.
Ford slowly sped up the car production line until workers couldn’t cope. Unions were formed with the agreement that production line speeds couldn’t be altered unless agreed upon.
Foxconn, the iPhone manufacturer, has reduced its employees from 110,000 to 50,000, thanks to the introduction of robots.
Harley Davidson motorcycles have a failure rate over twice that of the top three motorcycle manufacturers in the world.
Over 60 percent of Chinese consumers also say that they are willing to pay more for products labeled “Made in USA” than for those labeled “Made in China”.
In 1941, more than three million cars were manufactured in the United States. Only 139 more were made during the entire war. By the end of the war, more than half of all industrial production in the world would take place in the United States.
Knife manufacturer, Victorinox, claims never to have had to lay off an employee. To avoid this they set aside profits during boom periods to supplement recessionary periods, as well as temporarily contracting employees to other companies as outsourced labor during recessions.