Make This a Made in America Year

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State of Oregon Should Have a Made in Oregon Product List

med_Pamelas_Mug_copy55Imagine the possibilities of using all American-made products when building a home or remodeling.

An ABC News online report tells the story of a contractor in Bozeman, Montana, Anders Lewendal, who is building a home he hopes will be a blueprint for creating jobs in America.

Lewendal, an economist turned builder, is constructing a house made entirely from American-made products. Everything from the nails, screws and bolts, to the steel, staples and bathtub is made in the United States.

In all there are more than 120 products from more than 33 states. However, the builder acknowledges that using American products can be more expensive.

A box of nails is $5 more than those made in China and steel is $146 more a bundle. Even though certain goods are more expensive, in total, the cost of the house is nearly identical according to Lewendal. Currently, the all-American home, which is not yet finished , is running only one to two percent more than a foreign-sourced house.

Lewendal is convinced that if every builder bought just five percent more American materials it would create

220,000 jobs.

Baby Steps. What if homebuilders made a commitment that any product used in building a structure required at least 50 percent Made in America? Locally we asked several builders about using American products but most say that cost, availability and even the knowledge of where to get the products are time consuming and challenging.

According to Oregon4biz.com, Oregon is the largest lumber producer in the U.S. Oregon has 30.5 million acres of forestlands—about 46 percent of the total landmass of the state. An internationally-recognized leader in forest product manufacturing, Oregon combines accessible raw materials with cutting-edge innovation to produce a diverse range of high quality, value-added wood products that are exported to every corner of the globe. From dimensional lumber to ready-to-install windows and doors, Oregon’s value-added wood products are

world-renowned.

Central Oregon lumber manufacturing companies include JELD-WEN, Ochoco Lumber Company, Brightwood Corporation, Warm Springs Composite Products and Mid-Columbia Lumber Products. These companies are known for continued innovation in their product lines.

So it would make sense for the State of Oregon to offer a complete resource of products made in Oregon that can be used in the building process. pha

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