Friday, August 08, 2014

Hats off to Americraft Cookware for Sourcing in the U.S.A.

While looking for a U.S.-made crock pot for a site visitor, I contacted Americraft Cookware (West Bend, WI) about a slow-cooker base that they manufacture. The product is a base for a 4-quart stock pot that produces a "crock pot like" cooking experience.

I like Americraft because of their quality cookware that is made at their facility in West Bend. The customer service representative acknowledged that some components of the slow-cooker base (including the thermostat component) are imported because they are not available from U.S. sources.

However, she reiterated the company's commitment to U.S. sourcing of production materials, even when these are at higher cost than imported materials. I wanted to share her email here:

Unfortunately there are three items in two of our products that are no longer made in the United States and we are forced to source these items from foreign sources.  These items are certain metal handles, burner rings and a thermostat component for the slow cooker base.  We would be willing to spend more to buy these items from US sources if they were available but they simply do not exist anymore.  Perhaps one day they will return as many other former US dominated industries are.

As for our cookware all of the metal comes from Pennsylvania and Massachusetts at a cost that is 65% higher than the foreign sources we could use but choose not to.  All of our injection molded pieces such as the slow-cooker base and phenolic handles are made in Missouri at a cost that is also 65% higher than what we could get from a foreign source.  Once these parts and materials come into our factory they are formed, buffed, sanded, inspected, assembled, inspected again, tested, packaged, shipped and serviced by hard working, blue collar, lean and Green Americans that cost 90%.  We would challenge any of our competitors using foreign labor to put these numbers in their “Assembled in the USA from foreign components” pipe and smoke it!

When it's all said and done our products average 98% or better US components of which they only need to be 85% to be able to officially say "Made in the USA".  While we loose millions of profits that could be made from foreign sources of labor and parts we loose no sleep at night knowing that we’re doing the right thing.

By the way, I do not know of any traditional ceramic crock pots that are still made in USA.

Stephanie, Webmaster