One Of America’s Best Manufacturers Is This Japanese Zipper Maker

A strong piece of evidence in support of the many current calls to reshore American manufacturing is the tremendous performance by the many thousands of existing producers already working here.

I already knew one such standout U.S. manufacturer: Carhartt, the maker of working apparel, which I wrote about recently. As a result of that article, I learned about another: YKK, maker of zippers, other fasteners, and much more. (Who invented the zipper? Learn more here.) I found out that Carhartt became a major customer of theirs all the way back in 1974. That year Carhartt bought a million YKK zippers; today they buy about 40 million per year globally. I remember seeing the “YKK” stamp on the zipper pull of my blue jeans back when I was a kid, and it’s right there on the Wranglers I’m wearing today. Clearly they’re an American mainstay.