The Invasion Continues
Its not quite Red Dawn yet, but the increase of Chinese and Southeast Asian surfboard imports have increased significantly lately. With the economy being so unstable over the last few years we have become very aware of the impact low priced imports are having on the economy as a whole. Fingers can be pointed in several directions to blame for the decline in our economical growth, and imports of products that can be produced here in the US is a major reason.
Anyone who really knows the process and cost of building a surfboard can appreciate the hard work that goes into producing one of the last mass produced, handmade items in the country. As wacked out as some of the workers are, they are true experts in their field and usually carry many years of experience with them. We all also contribute to our economy heavily by paying taxes, buying gas, pay mortgages, etc… here in the US unlike the Chinese (Southeast Asian worker) and some the surfboard companies they work for. Still people are continuing to buy the imports and getting an inferior product? They may be cheaper or promise some sort of technological breakthrough, but in reality they are made by Chinese women miles from the ocean who have no idea what surfing is about.
The old saying of “You get what you pay for”, is pretty true when it comes down to the imports as well. The companies that are producing their boards overseas are paying about half as much as we are to make surfboards. The major reason for that is obviously the labor is extremely cheaper than here. Other than that they are using cheaper materials. Chinese made fiberglass cloth, cheaper petrochemicals, and knock off Future and FCS boxes and fins. Some of the “higher end” brands that produce overseas may use authentic materials but they are over there for several reasons, to not pay legitimate wages, not have to deal with the environmental protection agencies put in place to protect people, and to flat out make more money.
Support your fellow Americans and choose surfboards Made in the USA. That is something we still have hope in preserving. Textiles are gone, cars are pretty much gone, electronics are long gone. Surfboard manufacturers are still here and strong. Don’t support the sell outs giving you an inferior product.