March 10, 2014

The idea of re-shoring has gained momentum across the globe from the U.S. to Europe and even China. There’s growing appeal to bring manufacturing home and in many cases, back to cities that have been vacated for decades. The economic benefits are clear—bringing jobs back to municipalities.

But there are also intrinsic reasons to manufacture right here rather than far away.  The product gets embedded with meaning associated with the locale, and there’s an appreciation and bond for the people behind products. There’s often a link to tradition and craft, and all these factors strengthen the consumer’s interest in the product and the brand.

Another benefit to going local is having a flexible manufacturing base that allows for agility and speed, which caters to consumers who are becoming more demanding of made-to-order, personalized products. While seeking the lowest cost used to be the primary goal, some companies are finding value in coming back home—benefiting their companies, their brands and their communities.


Manufacturing at home comes with both opportunities and challenges. While consumers claim they value and seek out “made at home” products, they can’t always justify the price point once they reach into their wallets. But a way to get around these objections is in proving its benefits, from reduced impact on the environment to greater personalization to better quality.

It can also mean taking a more holistic view to business, wanting to contribute to one’s local community and economy, recognizing that this view has long-term benefits one might not see in the here and now and can also have strong, lasting brand impact.

For more prediction for the new foundations that are paving the way and inspiring the latest innovation, marketing, branding and design trends to come, download SIGHTINGS – The Forecast Issue: The Age of Redefinition.