One Way to Go Green: Buy American-Made Products

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One of the things I had to learn about going green is that there are lots of ways to approach it. For those people who are doing it specifically because of personal health, their approach often centers on the ingredients and components of products they buy. But some people take a broader, more global approach, considering the impact of their decisions on the health of the planet overall — whether in regard to carbon emissions or direct environmental impact of the manufacturing process.

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All that to say that every little step toward making all the things we buy more sustainable is a good step in my book. If taking that step also means creating more jobs for Americans — many of whom sorely need them — then it’s a double win. That’s why it’s not hard to get excited about Walmart’s plans to invest a whopping $250 billion in products that support American jobs over the next 10 years via their MADE BY initiative.

This goes directly against one of the biggest complaints I hear about Walmart: that the products they sell are cheaply made overseas. Instead, many of the products on Walmart shelves will come from a lot closer to home, and because of it, many more people will have meaningful jobs. I know a lot of people who have been out of work for a very long time who could stand to benefit from any program that makes it easier for them to find work.

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But if you’re like me, you probably still want some details. Well, Walmart plans to accomplish this in three ways:

  • Increasing what they already buy of U.S.-manufactured goods (and there’s already a lot)
  • Sourcing U.S. manufactured goods that are completely new to Walmart
  • Helping existing suppliers bring their manufacturing back to the U.S.

I’m especially excited about those last two. Anything that can be done to make existing manufacturers more sustainable can only be a good thing, but this initiative also has the potential to give small companies a chance to get their U.S.-made products on Walmart shelves. Hanna’s Candles is a good example.

What do you think about Walmart‘s new initiative? Do you think it is important to buy products made in the U.S.?

DISCLOSURE: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product samples and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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