A Lincolnton manufacturer was recently featured on ABC World News With Diane Sawyer in a segment that highlighted the importance of purchasing domestically made products.
Celia Rachel, a Lincolnton-based textile manufacturer with a plant and outlet store within Mohican Mills, was included as part of a â€œMade in Americaâ€ series produced by World News.
The story, which aired on Sept. 20, showcased incoming college freshman Monica Resendizâ€™s difficulty in outfitting her dorm room with products produced only in the United States.
Beth Myers, New York-based owner of Celia Rachel, said producers of the TV series had heard about her company while developing a previous segment in March on a Dallas, Texas, family whose home was refitted with American-made goods.
Myers said a High Point furniture company provided the family with some of its products.
She wrote producers a letter and was then contacted for the story. As a company whose products are manufactured entirely in Lincolnton, Celia Rachel served as a prime candidate for providing dorm-room necessities made in the U.S.
The â€œWorld Newsâ€ team had Celia Rachel ship some of its bedding products to Resendiz for her room on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Texas. Myers added that she â€œloved the stuff.â€
Since then, Myers said people have taken notice.
â€œThereâ€™s been an increase in interest and visibility for our website,â€ she said.
Having recently reworked the site to â€œlook more professional,â€ Myers said people are often â€œsurprised by what they see.â€ She is also hoping to reach potential customers through the Celia Rachel blog.
Myers has received positive feedback and many thank-yous for what she described as â€œsupporting America.â€
As for how a company can compete with foreign rivals in terms of cost and quality, Myers said it is â€œvery difficult.â€
â€œWe do the best we can,â€ she said.
Myers pointed out that the foreign products that actually match the Celia Rachel productsâ€™ quality â€” which she said is â€œexcellentâ€ â€” often have comparable pricing. And she added that she tries not to market up too much, as well.
She also said that the turnaround time for her company was much quicker than any overseas competitors, noting that the transportation of goods would obviously be much faster domestically.
Myers also believes that people who know the products trust what her company offers, which includes bedding, tulle, home goods and accessories. And now, said Myers, she is working on a wedding registry.
The Celia Rachel store is located on the premises of the manufacturing facility on East Gaston Street and is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.
SARAH LOWERY, Staff Writer