Gerbing’s Heated Clothing has begun to move production back to the U.S. from China by opening the factory in Stoneville, N.C., that it first announced last April.
“We’re bringing jobs back to America and employing our fellow Americans,” said president and CEO Jeff Gerbing. “It’s about time we started thinking of our country first, instead of just who’s got the cheapest prices. And the response from our customers has been over the top. They love it, and our high loyalty rankings have shot up even more.”
Gerbing praised the new factory’s work force. “This area has a great textile history. And the skills and productivity of the people is second to none. Our U.S.-made products are every bit as good as what China used to make for us, and in several areas they’re better. We’re working on making them better in all areas.”
Gerbing’s also has committed to sourcing all raw materials in the U.S. “When I say we’re going to make a product in America, that means top to bottom,” Gerbing said. “Every piece of cloth, every zipper, every plug, every wire, every thread is going to be sourced from American companies. … That means we’re helping to employ Americans at those supplier companies as well. It’s win/win for us and for our country.”
The company has set a timetable for bringing all products back to U.S. sourcing and manufacture. “As you can imagine, this takes a tremendous investment,” Gerbing said. “Right now we’re making our Heated Jacket Liners, Pant Liners and Vest Liners in North Carolina. Over the next three to five years, we’re going to be investing even more and bringing our Heated Outerwear production here as well. Our gloves will also transition to the U.S. as will socks and all our accessories.”
The North Carolina facility has extra room to accommodate growth. “We’re using 25,000 of an available 80,000 square feet,” Gerbing explained. “And there are more adjacent buildings to grow into. So our future is secure here. This is a vision I’ve had for years. It’s just time that someone took the lead and decided that Americans should come first.”