Ga., U.S. manufacture many products

The lack of good-paying jobs and the sluggish economy are hot topics. The most common response I hear to correct these problems is that our government or businesses should step up and create more jobs. I invite you to consider a new perspective: The only true job creator is the consumer and, yes, that shifts the responsibility to you and me.

Do you want to be part of the solution or do you expect someone else to fix everything?

Most buying decisions are multi-faceted with each part playing a different role in the final outcome. Obviously we must choose products that meet our needs and budget. The typical consumer doesn’t ponder where the product was manufactured or how purchasing it could impact job growth.

Most people think all manufacturing is done overseas and that we don’t make anything in America. This is true for certain items, but you would be amazed to learn about the multitude of products that are made in Georgia. Roughly 10 percent of our overall economy is based on the 480,000 employees who work in 9,500 manufacturing facilities in Georgia. We manufacture a wide variety of products in almost every industry, but the average consumer can hardly name three things that are manufactured in Georgia.

How many can you name?

Here are some interesting manufacturing facts about the Peach State:

• Careers in manufacturing pay an average 16 percent higher than non-manufacturing jobs.

• Assistance programs help pay for training for skilled trades

• Jobs are available and manufacturers are hiring

• The state’s business climate has been named No. 1 in the nation by Site Selection Magazine, a trade publication.

Growing jobs is simple - connect businesses and individual consumers to products which are locally manufactured and which they need. Gov. Nathan Deal recently declared June as “Buy From Georgia Month.” The centerpiece of the month is the second annual Georgia Manufacturing EXPO, which takes place June 13 and 14 at the Gwinnett Center.

It’s a grassroots movement that has gained the attention of Wal-Mart. As part of their growing jobs in America initiative, that corporation has pledged to buy $250 billion over the next 10 years in additional American-manufactured goods. Experts predict the initiative will create more than a million jobs.

During the expo, Wal-Mart executive Joe Quinn will share some of the details of this program with consumers. He’ll also speak with manufacturers at a special exhibitor-only reception so they can learn more details about how to get involved.

We live in a free country and choose what items to buy and where to purchase them.

Are you doing your part to help grow jobs by purchasing Georgia-manufactured goods?

Check out the Expo and learn about great products manufactured in Georgia and take the opportunity to drive a robot. Free tickets are at www.GeorgiaManufacturingExpo.com.

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