Could Your Idea Be Sold at Walmart? Find Out In June

walmart in south carolinaWhen it comes to purchasing products manufactured in America, Walmart is serious. In 2013, the company announced that they would purchase an additional $50 billion products in 10 years, even though items that are made, sourced, or grown in America already accounted for two-third of Walmart spends to buy products for their U.S. stores.

So, as the McCook Gazette reports, the world’s largest retailer opens their doors each year for a daylong event at their headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas in order for entrepreneurs to pitch their products to the team: “We are opening our doors and making our buyers available to meet with suppliers with one goal in mind: buy more American products,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart’s vice president of U.S. Sourcing and Manufacturing, to the Gazette. “From food to toys to apparel, and companies large and small from coast to coast, we want to make a deal with you for your U.S. made products.”

Walmart estimates that some pretty fascinating results will come of their initiative to support U.S. made products:

New Jobs: The company estimates that one million new U.S. jobs will be created through this initiative, including direct manufacturing job growth of approximately 250,000.

Drive Purchasing Decisions: According to the company’s studies, “Made in the USA” is a strong driver of purchasing decisions (85% of mos said it is important for a retailer to sell “Made in the USA” products). The move toward recognizing the quality of products manufactured in the USA sets a strong precedent for other retailers interested in carrying American products.

Provide Opportunities for small American Manufacturers: By allowing manufacturers and entrepreneurs to pitch products that are American-made, the incentive to not only assemble, but actually manufacture parts in the United States, the company encourages reshoring of existing processes, as well as localization of new ones.

These reshoring processes have a wider impact than just the manufacturing industry, too: In a fascinating article for Packaging Digest, Chandler Slavin notes that more money spent on U.S. manufacturing impacts adjacent industries, like the retail packaging industry. The more products are made in the USA, the more products need to be packaged for retail here, too: Business is better across the board.

Previously, the Gazette reports, a tiny, three-person company called Myndology Inc. from Appleton, Wisconsin landed a deal for their flashcards to be sold in over 3,000 Walmart stores. “Filling out the application was exciting in itself and a chance that I couldn’t pass on. It’s not every day that you get the chance to sit down in front of a Walmart buyer and pitch the products you have put your life into, then land a deal for over 3,000 Walmart stores,” said Nick Miller, President and Owner of Myndology, Inc. “Since our deal for flash cards, we’ve sold two more products to Walmart. I recommend to anyone manufacturing in the U.S. to submit to Open Call if they want to bring their items to retail.”

If you’re a manufacturer with a small business, an idea, or are a supplier with a U.S.-made shelf-ready product, you should check out this website to learn a little bit more about the fourth annual summit. Buyers from Walmart, Sam’s Club, and Walmart.com will be there to meet with companies offering new, U.S.-made items. Messages from governors on state involvement in manufacturing job growth, a keynote speech from Marcus Lemonis of CNBC’s “The Profit,” and supplier academy sessions will round out the June 28th event.

To learn more about how to support U.S. manufacturing or how to apply for a place at the event this June, find more information here. Questions? Comments? Want to learn more? Leave a comment in the section below!

photo credit: Wal-Mart Winnsboro, SC January 2016 via photopin (license)