Are Forklifts "Made in America" Better?
Happy Independence Day! This week we celebrate the founding of our nation, and what it means to be an American.
"Made in America" used to mean the highest quality product. You knew you had the best, because it was made right here.
Does this still hold true today?
We at Cromer think so. Many of our products do come from overseas manufacturing (and we wouldn't carry them if they weren't high quality), but much of our forklift inventory is made right here in the U.S.
These are the top 6 forklift brands Cromer carries. Where do they make the forklifts you rely on? You might be surprised.
In 1994, Mitsubishi and Capterillar formed a joint venture to manufacture their forklifts in Houston, Texas. In 2010, the MCFA joint ventured with Jungheinrich, to distribute their product in the US. They've recently announced an expansion of 200,000 square feet to manufacture MCFA and Jungheinrich electrics in Houston: Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc. (MCFA) Breaks Ground on Expanded Houston Manufacturing Facilities
Manufactures forklifts in Korea, but they have reshored some manufacturing & parts distribution to Lexington, Kentucky. Clark Material Handling Co. Resumes Manufacturing Lift Trucks in Lexington, KY
Manufactures all of its forklifts at its plant in Southwest Denver, CO. Visit their website at DonkeyForklift.com
Manufactures worldwide depending on product type. Doosan is the largest U.S. Skid-steer manufacturer in the world. They produce the Bobcat line in the U.S., and are North Dakota's largest manufacturer. Doosan Industrial Vehicles - Worldwide Locations
The #1 electric forklift in the world, based in Germany. Four production plants there, in Norderstedt, Lüneburg, Moosburg and Landsb. One production plant in Qingpu, China. One Manufacturing Facility in Houston, Texas (participating in the new MCFA facility), expected to begin operation by 2014. Facts and Figures about Jungheinrich (PDF)
Operates facilities in China, Finland, the USA, the Netherlands and Malaysia. Kalmar has its U.S. forklift manufacturing facility in Ottawa, Kansas. Facts and Figures about Kalmar North America (PDF)
The question is: How do the American manufacturing facilities benefit these forklifts?
- High quality. I've toured the U.S. facilities of numerous forklift manufacturers, including the new MCFA Houston site, and am always impressed with the quality. It's no wonder US-made forklifts last so long.
- Local jobs & strong communities. More production is returning to our shores (a practice called "reshoring"), spurring local growth with new jobs and income within communities.
- Shorter supply chain, faster turnaround. Manufacturing something as complex as a forklift takes a lot of time & effort. If you do so in the same country as your prime customers, you shorten the time it takes for them to receive your finished product. This can also lower costs.
Quality labor. Reasonable costs. Faster delivery. These are all advantages to making forklifts in America, for American industries. Otherwise manufacturers like CAT wouldn't bring their operations back into the U.S. (or have never left, like Donkey).
Cromer does carry some material handling equipment made overseas. But only if it matches up to the quality standard set by our forklifts "Made in America."
--Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss