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Factories: More About Where Our Products Are Made

There's a lot of talk these days about where products are made. Many people are specifically looking for Made in America labels. Just last week, I saw an article in The New York Times about the resurgence of textile factories in the United States due to customer demands for American-made goods– and how they can't meet demand because there is a shortage of workers with the necessary skills and the willingness to do this kind of work.

I understand what drives this demand– the belief that American Made means higher quality, the desire to keep jobs at home, and the concern about working conditions abroad. The recent images of the collapsed factory in Bangladesh, and the human chain required to carry hundreds of victims out of the rubble, made me heartsick.

I am especially sympathetic to the status of working conditions overseas because I have been in dozens of factories throughout the world and I've seen conditions ranging from unacceptable to outstanding. And I've seen the opportunities which good factories can offer young women and men with few other employment options. As with most things, balance is required.

I'd love to see more textile factories in the U.S., providing good wages and decent working conditions to a willing-and-able workforce, and producing quality merchandise for consumers. I'd also like to see consumers demanding quality products made with fair labor practices for all of their purchases.

There is good news for Lucky & Me customers– all Lucky & Me products are made in approved apparel factories located in India and Sri Lanka. These vendors are held to the highest standards for workplace conditions and labor practices. Most customers are very aware of India, but fewer know much about Sri Lanka, so we'd like to make a brief introduction of this beautiful country.

Sri Lanka is known for its excellent and modern textile mills and garment factories. The government of Sri Lanka has achieved recognition for its support of social responsibility in the apparel industry.The Sri Lankan apparel industry has long had a program called Garments Without Guilt, which emphasizes the importance of ethical standards, including opposition to child labor and protection of the environment.

Look for the Made in Sri Lanka label to find clothing that is of high quality and ethically made.


By Liz Smith. Liz has worked across the globe for many of the world's best known apparel brands, including Justice, Chico's, Victoria's Secret, and Hanes. She has worked closely with dozens of factories in more than 20 countries to ensure that production is of the highest standard. Liz has managed all aspects of garment production, from design through fabric development to sewing and merchandising - so she knows what it takes to make high-quality apparel. Liz is thrilled to share her knowledge about clothes to help discerning customers choose the finest products. 

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