Walmart welcomed more than 500 manufacturers on Tuesday at its world headquarters, during the company’s first Made in the USA open call. Suppliers met with senior company officials and merchants to pitch products for stores, clubs, and online.
“We are opening our doors and making our buyers available to meet with suppliers with one goal in mind: buy more American products,” said Bill Simon, president and CEO of Walmart U.S. “When we buy new products, suppliers hire people to make those products. These American jobs build families and communities, and they help our country thrive. That’s really what our domestic manufacturing commitment is all about.”
Walmart plans to pursue its Made in the USA goals by
• increasing what it already buys of U.S. manufactured goods
• sourcing "new to Walmart" U.S. manufactured goods
• supporting the re-shoring of manufacturing of the goods it currently buys
Simon said Walmart expects to discover new products that it didn't know were out there. “We’re excited to find new items that will delight our customers at prices they can afford. This is not a program or a promotion – this is economics. For many products, the math simply works.”
In addition to enabling manufacturers to pitch products, the retailer also hosted breakout sessions on key merchandise topics such as labeling and packaging, product compliance, sustainability, supplier administration, and supplier diversity.
Michelle Gloeckler, Walmart’s executive vice president of consumables and U.S. manufacturing, said customers have expressed a desire to buy products that will support their communities.
"With changes in energy and automation processes overseas, it is increasingly cost-effective and efficient to manufacture closest to the point of consumption,” said Gloeckler. “We can better respond to trends and customer demand while providing great products at affordable prices.”
to Daily News