I was watching one of my favorite shows last week, Shark Tank, and there was a particular story that got me thinking.  According to ABC Donny McCall,

designed the patented made-in-America Invis-A-Rack, the most innovative cargo management system for pick-up trucks ever developed. This collapsible truck track can be unfolded in seconds to carry everything from kayaks, to ladders, to lumber. Since starting his business last September, Donny has grossed over $40,000 with no marketing, and Donny knows that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Fresh off his win for Best New Product of the Year for 2010 from Popular Mechanics, Donny and Invis-A-Rack are primed for their next move.

If you haven’t watched the show, what occurs is that the entrepreneur tries to get “the sharks” who are very wealthy investors to take a look at their product and go into business with them.  The sharks would not deal with Donny because he wanted to keep all production in America and they thought it would just be too costly to make and thus result in slimmer margins.

Right about now you are probably thinking things like “Go America” and “The Sharks are dicks” and that is easy to say but ask yourself this question:

  • If you had two competing products next to each other on the shelf all things about the products are equal but one had a stamp that said Made in America would you pay more?

How much more? Is it is a whole number that would get you? or is it a percentage?

It is easy to just blurt out Yes, but if I had 2 toys and one had made in America on it but was $22 more than the Chinese version I don’t think I could pull the trigger that easily.  If the cost was another $2 or 3 bucks I might be able to.  What if the item was only $1 and the American version was $2? That is 100% difference but it is only a buck?

Thoughts? Would you pay more for a “certified” stamp that said Made in America?