Made in the U.S.A.'s new cachet

American manufacturers take back turf.


(FSB) -- U.S. toymakers, long ago crowded out by Chinese manufacturers, may be taking back a bit of turf. Whittle Shortline Railroad (woodentrain.com), a Louisiana, Mo., toymaker, saw a 30% surge in sales in June, when lead paint was found on Chinese-made toys. Whittle is happy to play the "Made in USA" card: Its home page now sports a yellow 100% KID-SAFE WITH LEAD FREE PAINTS banner. "The atmosphere right now is positive for us," says owner Mike Whitworth, 59. "American consumers are willing to pay more for quality."

Some businesses go even further in trying to leverage the recall backlash. Frank Davis, CEO of Food for Health International (foodforhealthint.com) in Orem, Utah, drew national media attention for slapping CHINA-FREE stickers on his nutrition supplements. Accused of nativism, Davis, 60, is unapologetic: "I'd prefer to say 'synthetic-free,' but customers are looking for 'China-free' right now." And he says it's working: "We're on the cusp of increasing sales fourfold."  Top of page

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Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.