Is Carhartt Made in USA?

Many consumers wonder if Carhartt, a company known for making durable, rugged, and high-quality apparel, is still manufacturing in the USA despite so many multinational companies shifting their manufacturing overseas.

Unfortunately, Carhartt products are primarily made in Mexico and Vietnam. However, the American-based brand makes some products in the United States. Over time, Carhartt has reduced its American manufacturing presence.

What Carhartt Products are Made in the USA?

According to the company, some of their products are now made outside the US, just like other large apparel companies. Carhartt is committed to providing the best workwear, no matter where it comes from.

How can you determine which Carhartt products were made in the USA?

You can find dozens of products on the Carhartt website by entering "USA" in the search field.

Some products are labeled with "Made In the USA" while others have labels that say "Made of US parts and US-made materials."

Rest of the products won't likely have any labeling. It is easy to tell they were not made in America if you cannot find the origin information. This is because companies often hide the origin information when it comes from another country. Although they are required to include the information on the packaging, many companies hide it.

Carhartt claims they stand behind every product, no matter where it is made. They also understand that some consumers might prefer to purchase products made in the USA and have created a "Made in the USA” line of clothing product pages on their website. You can visit the American Made Carhartt directory here.

Carhartt’s history of Made in USA

Carhartt was founded in 1889 to make overalls for railroad workers. Hamilton Carhartt, founder of the company, asked railroad employees for feedback to help create a product that would be useful for hardworking Americans. The brand quickly became synonymous with high-quality workwear.

Carhartt is an American company. Dearborn, Michigan is the headquarters of Carhartt. They have four production plants, three in Kentucky, one in Tennessee and approximately 1,107 American workers. Kentucky is home to the majority of their American manufacturing. The brand collaborates with US suppliers and produces items in-house at its US facilities.

Carhartt has a partnership with Mt. Vernon Mills, Georgia. They also procure YKK snaps from Kentucky.

They also have factories in Mexico and China.

Carhartt has included a corporate responsibility statement that states that the clothing giant adheres to a Workplace Code of Conduct. This code is to be followed by all international suppliers and vendors.

These guidelines are intended to ensure vendors adhere to the Core Conventions of International Labor Organization (ILO) and UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UNDHR), as well as best practices in reducing the environmental impact.

Where are Carhartt Factories in America?

We will be covering all Carhartt's factories and partners. To better understand the company, we will look at how they spread manufacturing. Mexico is the country with the highest manufacturing numbers at Carhartt with 21 percent. Vietnam comes in second with 16 percent. They are followed by India and the United States, who tied for third. Surprisingly, the United States was in third place. The information does not show exact manufacturing levels. It does however give an indication of the locations they work around the globe.

Carhartt currently has 84 manufacturing partners. Only a small percentage of these manufacturing partners are factories they own. It is difficult to determine how much business each third-party factory receives.

Kentucky:

We previously discussed how Carhartt employs 1,107 Americans. Let's take a closer look at their Kentucky manufacturing facilities. Their Madisonville plant is located in Kentucky. They employ 700 people here, and invested $11,000,000 in 2011 to increase their workforce from 500 to 700. The upgrades were officially completed in 2014.

Carhartt was once a major employer in Kentucky. It employed more than 2,000 people during the peak of American industry. The brand was popular among farmers, hunters, union workers, as well as urban rappers.

They had previously owned four Kentucky facilities. However, Carhartt shut down its Providence sewing plant in 2006 after it acquired four more. This was a common shift many apparel companies had made to remain competitive. It is hard to fight against Chinese-made clothing because they are cheaper than American-made competitors.

Let's take a look at the plant located in Irvine, Kentucky. The plant was established in 1932. It started as an administrative office and warehousing facility, but eventually, it became a sewing factory. They have seven employees today, so it is not an exaggeration to say that it is a small facility.

We still applaud their decision to hire American workers. However, they went from employing over 2,000 workers in the state to hiring an estimated 707 employees. This company is not to be blamed, but there were factors on the market that made it more difficult for American apparel. The American textile industry was not saved by our politicians. The American people failed to take sufficient action to save the American textile industry.

Their last plant is in Edmonton, Kentucky. Their potential staff could range from 100 to 249 people. Although we couldn't confirm the number of people employed here, we can make an optimistic estimate of 200. They would have approximately 1,107 workers directly in the United States.

Tennessee:

Carhartt employs approximately 200 people in Camden, Tennessee. It is the last Tennessee facility. The factory was established in the middle of July 1992. Carhartt purchased Oshkosh B'Gosh's Mckenzie facility from them in 1994. However, they soon closed the Mckenzie facility down in 1999.

Carhartt also had a Tennessee facility, a sewing machine plant in Dover. It was purchased by Carhartt in 1995. They had to move manufacturing jobs to the United States to compete with imports that caused them to close down their factory in 2005.

Carhartt Manufacturing in China:

Carhartt owns one third-party plant in Zhongshan City (Guangdong). Although they don't have a large manufacturing presence in China, they still manufacture here. This company has a local partner that was established in 1980. It is not known how long they have been working with Carhartt, nor how often. Their workforce is estimated to be 1,300. Under Armour Inc. is the other major trading partner of this factory, along with Carhartt.

Carhartt Manufacturing in Vietnam:

Carhartt Vietnam has 17 locations that either have a factory or are partners. It should not be surprising that Vietnam is now the leading player in the textile sector. Because of rising wages in China, Vietnam has been able to manufacture at a lower cost than China.

Carhartt Manufacturing in Mexico:

Carhartt began manufacturing in Mexico in 1997 when it built its first factory in Pejamo in Guanajuato. This is the heart of Mexico. They had a 300,000-square-foot facility and employed approximately 500 union workers. It was designed to maintain the United States' core production. Carhartt's slow descent into overseas manufacturing began at this point.

They purchased a second factory in Irapuato, 30 miles away, in December 2001. Carhartt purchased two additional factories in Durango from the Labor Board at an auction.

They bought the first one in Gomez Palacio Durango, which is a suburb of Torreon. The factory is located right next to the Mexican state line, Durango and Coahuila. It is located approximately six hours from the United States border, which makes it a strategic location to manufacture products.

Carhartt also has some other Mexican partnerships and contractors. In total, they have 18 locations in Mexico. Carhartt has a direct factory list which you can find here. These are often partnerships or third-party factories and not Carhartt's.

Is Carhartt Made in USA?

Carhartt has largely exported its manufacturing overseas. You can still find American-made products if you visit their "Made in the USA” line. Their American-made clothing line is still a favorite and most loved by American workers.

Carhartt is proud to have a strong American heritage. They have produced an estimated 57,000,000 pieces of clothing in America. They did their best to remain American, and they managed to do so for a longer time than other apparel companies. In the 1980s and 1990s, American textile industries fell due to lower labor costs abroad. In some cases, infrastructure was not available. Some clothing brands were forced to relocate abroad.

Carhartt began closing down US manufacturing in the late 2000s because they couldn't afford their business model. They had to adapt in order to survive. Sometimes we blame companies for not being American-made, but Carhartt gives us the option with their products. We need more American support to make it a success and encourage companies to remain American-made.

Carhartt can't claim to be made entirely in the USA today, but they remain a privately-owned, family-owned business that is active in the US as well as abroad. An estimated 1,107 Americans are employed directly, and 5,500 people are around the world. Carhartt guarantees its customers reliability by producing quality products that are durable, high-quality, and well-worth. You can learn more about the Carhartt guarantee.