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Walmart's big 'made in America' PR push is just that-a PR pushRss@dailykos.com (laura Clawson)
Friday, August 23, 2013, 12:25 pm
Are American-made goods coming soon to a Walmart near you, as the company's PR department would have you believe? Does it surprise you that the answer is "not really"?
Walmart says it's going to increase its American buying by $50 billion over the next decade. That sounds impressive until Stacy Mitchell lays out the context:
For starters, $50 billion over a decade may sound huge at first, but measured against Walmart's galactic size, it's not. An additional $5 billion a year amounts to only 1.5 percent of what Walmart currently spends on inventory.
Worse, very little of this small increase in spending on American-made goods will actually result in new U.S. production and jobs. Most of the projected increase will simply be a byproduct of Walmart's continued takeover of the grocery industry. Most grocery products sold in the U.S. are produced here. As Walmart expands its share of U.S. grocery sales-it now captures 25 percent, up from 4 percent in 1998-it will buy more U.S. foods. But this doesn't mean new jobs, because other grocers are losing market share and buying less