For decades, U.S. manufacturers in nearly every industry have depended largely on offshore suppliers for raw materials, processed goods, and component parts. Even those companies that perform their own product assembly in the United States often rely upon imported components for their products.
The COVID-19 crisis has revealed significant flaws in this strategy, as interrupted supply lines interfere with manufacturing and distribution of personal protective equipment (PPE), medical supplies, and critical healthcare equipment. To mitigate supply line deficiencies, the U.S. has begun to rely upon stateside manufacturers to meet increasing demand in the battle against COVID-19.
Fortunately, Swift Glass, a U.S. based company, has been able to maintain the supply of glass products to our customers in all industries. Without the need to reshore our fabrication capabilities, establish new stateside facilities, or modify our supply logistics, we have been able to meet increasing demand for a variety of glass products needed to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
Impact of COVID-19 on North American Manufacturing
North American manufacturers have been scrambling to revamp manufacturing processes and supply chains in the face of the COVID-19 crisis. With 89% of North America’s 1,000+ manufacturers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic according to a survey from March 2020, businesses are facing supply challenges. In fact, many manufacturers have indicated that they will likely return manufacturing and material sourcing to North America.
Glass fabricators have been hit hard by changing markets and interrupted sourcing due to COVID-19. Some, like Swift Glass, were able to continue working as essential businesses under government mandates like New York State Executive Order 202.6. Like many essential businesses, glass fabricators provide critical materials for medical supplies and equipment used by laboratories, medical centers, and hospitals in the fight against COVID-19.
While glass materials are necessary for critical medical and lab equipment, there is also increasing demand for glass to protect workers, patients and the general public. As an example, high levels of thermal resistance and UV transparency exhibited by fused silica glass makes it ideal for use in equipment fighting the COVID-19 virus.
Reshoring Back to the U.S.
As markets in the post-COVID world continue to evolve, glass fabrication reshoring is projected to increase. However, it may be time to consider the entirety of the supply chain, and ways in which we can make our supply lines stronger. COVID-19 isn’t the first crisis to challenge glassmakers and other manufacturers, and it certainly won’t be the last. Rather than reacting to problems as they arise, glassmakers can find ways to access materials and supplies closer to home.
For more than 100 years, Swift Glass has been a leader in the glass fabrication industry, and we have maintained our place at the top with innovation and flexibility. As an American-based fabricator, we have a large supply of raw materials stored in our domestic location. As the market continues to shift, we encourage business owners to focus on the benefits reshoring can offer to glass fabricators, manufacturers, and businesses across the U.S. Some of the main advantages of reshoring include:
- Shorter Lead Times: Without the need to wait for international shipping of products and materials, manufacturing your product takes less time.
- More Competitive Pricing: The cost of shipping overseas is increasing, and it is rapidly becoming more cost effective to source materials on the domestic market. With lower overhead, you can provide your customers with better pricing.
- Higher Quality Materials: Closer sources and more regulatory oversight means that you can ensure the quality of your products and materials in ways that are not possible when sourcing materials from overseas.
- Stronger Economy: When you buy domestic products, you are supporting your local economy and the U.S. economy as a whole. In this unprecedented crisis, the economy could use your support more than ever.
Glass Fabrication With Swift Glass: Made in the USA
For almost a century, Swift Glass has maintained a reputation as one of the finest providers of quality fabricated glass parts in the country. We have always been dedicated to supporting our local and domestic economy, and our centralized sourcing and manufacturing have provided us with a level of stability uncommon for manufacturers during the ongoing crisis.
To learn how Swift Glass combines superior sourced materials with comprehensive manufacturing expertise, download our eBook “Reasons Why Your Glass Part Should Be Produced by Swift Glass”, or contact our experts to discuss your next project.