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Sweetwater encourages customers to "Buy American"

9:58 PM, Oct 31, 2012   |    comments
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An East Tennessee town will officially kick off a campaign November 1 that encourages residents to "Buy American".

The Sweetwater Merchants and Property Association teamed with the Town of Sweetwater to get businesses in the area to put American-made products front-and-center in their stores.

Twenty-eight businesses have signed on to be a part of the campaign. Sweetwater Mayor Doyle Lowe said he believes the campaign would entice many people in the area.

"By shopping locally, they [local residents] have an opportunity to invest into the downtown area," he said.

Lowe said the city was also interested in the campaign because of its possible local impact. The city points to a study done in 2008 by the consulting group, Civic Economics. The group, which focused on Grand Rapids, Mich., found that for every $100 spent on a local business, $68 stayed in the area. While, the same study found only $43 stayed in a community if customers went to a store that was a part of a national chain.

Beds to Go Store Manager Chris Tucker said one of the biggest challenges American businesses have is getting customers to forgo stereotypes.

"You know just because it's not "Made in China," doesn't mean it's not as good," he said.

If you are interested in participating in Sweetwater's "Made in the USA" campaign, there's plenty of time.  It lasts until December.

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