Beyond the Olympic Uniforms: Where Our Favorite Products Are Really Made

Team USA wearing Chinese made clothing
Team USA sported Ralph Lauren's much maligned, Chinese-made Olympic uniforms during the Opening Ceremony's Parade of Nations, the runway of athletes that marks the patriotism-inducing finish to the rousing spectacle.

It was hard to miss the firestorm of indignation that erupted over the foreign-made uniforms: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called for the burning of the preppie-nautical duds. The brouhaha even prompted Congress to draft a bill requiring that Team USA's Olympic uniforms be made in America in the future.

Sponsored Links
For his part, Lauren has promised the uniforms he's delivering for the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, will be U.S.-made.

But the bipartisan political clamor over the Chinese uniforms smacks of hypocritical grandstanding: The very lawmakers who are so outraged serve in a government that has promoted a globalized economy, which has resulted in the offshoring of U.S. jobs to foreign countries.

And a snapshot of where many of the big consumer products sold in the U.S. are actually made underlines the point that "Made in China" tags have become as American as apple pie.

But of course, China isn't the only importer of goods sold in the U.S. We took an unscientific survey of some of America's more popular products to see where they're actually made.

Top Imports to America
See Gallery
Beyond the Olympic Uniforms: Where Our Favorite Products Are Really Made

Iconic American retailer the Gap (GPS) is currently selling these brightly-colored jeans -- one of the hottest fashion trends this year -- that were made in Sri Lanka. The small island nation was the 13th-largest source of U.S. apparel imports from January 2012 to May 2012, according to the American Apparel & Footwear Association.

But it's China that's our biggest source of foreign-made clothing, accounting for an estimated 36.49% of U.S. apparel imports for the same period, AAFA data reveals.

SOURCE: AAFA (American Apparel and Footwear Association)

These Nike Air Pro 11 (NKE) sneakers were made in Vietnam, the second biggest importer of footwear to the U.S.

But they're far behind China, which accounted for a whopping 84.95% of the footwear imported into the states from January 2012 to May 2012, the AAFA estimates.

SOURCE: AAFA (American Apparel and Footwear Association)

Swedish home retailer Ikea is the second-biggest furniture chain in America. But this VALLVIK 3-drawer chest comes from neither country. It was made in Poland, where about 1% of U.S. furniture, household items and baskets originate, according to figures provided to DailyFinance by the Foreign Trade Division of the U.S. Census Bureau.

The largest source of U.S. furniture, household items and basket imports come from China (surprise, surprise), where an estimated 58% of those products are made, Foreign Trade Division data reveals.


SOURCE: U.S. Census Bureau

Despite the fancy French-sounding name, this Cuisinart coffeemaker was made in China.

No shock, China accounts for nearly half of the household and kitchen appliance imports to the U.S., according to Foreign Trade Division data.

SOURCE: U.S. Census Bureau

This Acura MDX sport utility, from Japanese automaker Honda (HMC), was made in Alliston, Ontario, Canada.

Indeed, our neighbors to the north export more cars to the U.S. -- 31% -- than any other foreign nation, according to Foreign Trade Division data.

SOURCE: U.S. Census Bureau


Read Full Story
  • DJI26202.73240.290.93%
  • NIKKEI 22520628.019.440.05%
    Hang Seng26048.72-221.32-0.84%
  • USD (PER EUR)1.110.00040.03%
    USD (PER CHF)1.02-0.0008-0.08%
    JPY (PER USD)106.38-0.2120-0.20%
    GBP (PER USD)1.210.00150.13%