We wrote over the weekend about how shocked we were to find some American-made products at Wal-Mart and took it as a very positive sign.  Well I wasn't thinking much about it when, on a very typical suburban Sunday afternoon errand, I made a quick run to Target.

Here was yesterday's very mundane list – see if looks like the kinds of things you might typically buy:

  • wrapping paper
  • bow
  • two birthday cards
  • new box of crayons
  • two coloring books
  • folder: specifically Superman
  • birthday party gift: specifically Rock 'em Sock 'em Robots
  • pencil sharpener
  • sharpened pencils
  • scented candle
  • eggs
  • butter

Imagine my delight when, with 14 items on my list and without much effort, I found that 11 of the 14 had Made in USA options which I gladly grabbed.  The wrapping paper, bow, and greeting cards were American-made from the Target brand. The crayons were made by Crayola. The coloring books were produced by Bendon Publishing for American Greetings. The pencils were USA Gold from the Write Dudes. The candle was by Illume from Minneapolis for Target. The eggs and butter were from local dairy distributors.  The pencil sharpener was the only item when, even given a (limited) choice, I did not find any American-made options. The requests for the school folder and the birthday gift were so specific that I was not left with any other options. But all in all, I was able to buy American for 79% of the items purchased in a very ordinary Big Box store visit.  Not too shabby.

Can you imagine if everyone could buy American-made products for 75-80% of the things they needed? Wow.  Well, I am living the dream… yesterday at least! Sometimes it just takes a little trying.

So, tell us, have you been trying to look for those three magical words more often?
What happened when you did?