What "Made in the USA" means to consumers

12/23/2012 | New York Times (tiered subscription model), The

Though studies show that Americans are willing to pay more for goods labeled "Made in the USA" than those marked "Made in China," marketers at manufacturers such as Whirlpool say that quality still drives sales, while touting U.S.-based factories is just "icing." Other studies confirm that consumers may be more motivated to buy American because of safety and quality concerns, not by jobs-related patriotism. "People are paying attention in categories that are ingested like food, medicine and personal care products, but less so in electronics, office supplies and appliances," says Jonathan Asher, executive vice president at Perception Research Services.

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