Harley-Davidson is another brand that personifies the quintessential rugged, free-spirit American. The motorcycle brand was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1903 and was one of two automotive brands that managed to survive the Great Depression. Despite the success, Harley-Davidson motorcycles did not remain a fully American-made product.
Today, though they have plants in Wisconsin, Missouri, and Pennsylvania, the company shocked many of its loyal customers when, in 2018, it moved its production overseas. Today, many of their electric components are made in China. It used to be the biggest motorbike manufacturer in the world, operating in more than 60 countries.
Made Overseas: Huffy Bikes
Huffy Bikes have been headquartered in Ohio since 1887. Huffy was revolutionary in their development of a convertible bike in 1949 with the first-ever training wheels for children. To this day, the brand is considered one of the best products designated for children, however, they have a long way to go when it comes to competing against the big boy bikes.
Many bike models and years later, Huffy sadly closed two of its U.S.-based factories, moving their production to China in 1999. Huffy also has factories in Mexico and Taiwan, with 70% of its materials coming from these off-shore locations.
Made Overseas: Fisher-Price Toys
Toy brand, Fisher-Price, has filled homes for years with its wide variety of toys for kids of many ages. Fisher-Price falls under the umbrella of the larger toy brand, Mattel, which outsources production from Chinese factories. Disturbingly, the brand has had to issue many recalls of their toys made by Chinese vendors in 2007 and in 2020 due to dangerously high levels of lead.
The company has since promised to regain its customers' confidence once again. They are globally known for the best lie of products, Little People toys, which delivers various play sets such as a house, school, garage, and more.
Made Overseas: Melissa & Doug Toys
Melissa & Doug toys are a favorite of consumers for their classic, wooden designs and bright colors. But if you’re looking for American-made toys, Melissa & Doug will unfortunately disappoint. The toy company is headquartered in Connecticut, but they manufacture the toy parts in China. What’s more disturbing is that their toys were found to pose potential health risks.
In both 2008 and 2009, there was a recall of 26,000 of their toys due to the discovery of excessive levels of barium in the surface paint. So, when it comes to purchasing safe toys for your kids, it may be better to buy them closer to home!
Made Overseas: Barbie Dolls
Barbie dolls are some of the most iconic toys not only in America but across the globe. The dolls were originally conceptualized by Ruth Handler to be a 3-D version of a paper doll. Today, the Barbie doll has come a long way from the simple fashion doll.
Now, Barbie dolls are doctors, scientists, athletes, and businesswomen who represent the “American dream” for many young girls. But these “American dream” dolls were never made in America. They were first manufactured in Japan in 1959. And today, being owned by outsourcing giant Mattel, Barbies are made in Chinese, Malaysian, and Indonesian factories.