BENTONVILLE, AR: Walmart will open its doors to new and existing suppliers for the company?s ?Made in the USA? Open Call and U.S. Manufacturing Summit on July 7-8. During the event, current and prospective suppliers will have the opportunity to meet with the company?s senior leaders and merchants to pitch their products for the chance to have them sold at Walmart, on Walmart.com and in Sam?s Club locations.
Last summer, Walmart hosted its first-ever Open Call event where the company held more than 800 meetings. Following the day?s meetings, Walmart made deals with hundreds of innovative new products, from crab cakes to taco plates.
?Open Call is a unique opportunity to find great products made or assembled by American workers. With these suppliers, we can increase domestic manufacturing through our commitment to purchase more U.S.-made goods benefiting our customers and communities,? said Cindi Marsiglio, VP, sourcing and manufacturing for Walmart U.S. ?We know that sourcing products closer to the point of consumption has tremendous benefits to our business.?
?During our first Open Call event, we made deals with suppliers of all sizes, from those selling product in thousands of our stores to those supplying to just a few. As we continue to grow our online assortments, we added new items to Walmart.com and currently offer more than 22,000 made in USA products online,? Marsiglio added.
Examples of 2014 Open Call Deals:
? Chef Jenn first began selling her seafood items made in her Memphis kitchen to friends six years ago. She presented her products to the Walmart seafood buyer who gave her a deal on the spot. Today, her line of high-quality seafood products are in more than 800 Walmart stores across the country, and she?s expected to increase the number of her food offerings at Walmart stores.
? Luxurien International is in more than 600 Walmart stores following a successful launch on Walmart.com with its Contemporary Metal Bands, Camouflage Rings and Exotic Wood Jewelry. By year end, Luxurien expects to hire an additional 35 employees and is planning to break ground on a state-of-the-art USA production facility just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah.
? Jarratt Industries owners Hugh and Nicole Jarratt are Arkansas natives who developed a plastic plate used specifically for tacos and known simply as, ?the taco plate.? After pitching the product to Walmart, the company ordered one million taco plates to sell at all Walmart stores across the country.
? Emilia PC acquired a factory in DaKalb, Mississippi and is reshoring beauty products from Israel following a commitment from Walmart merchants at Open Call and Walmart Made in USA Summits .The company expects to create 100 jobs by the end of the year. These beauty products are expected to hit store shelves this summer.
?Creating food is my passion but I wanted to turn my hobby into a career. When I came to Walmart to present my products at Open Call, I didn?t know what to expect as a small business owner,? said Jennifer McCullough, CEO of Chef Jenn. ?I was so excited to get a deal with Walmart and have a new opportunity to reach a variety of new consumers across the country with my gourmet frozen seafood and other items.?
In 2013, Walmart announced the company would purchase an additional $250 billion in products supporting American jobs over 10 years. Walmart will accomplish this goal by pursuing a multi-pronged approach that includes: increased purchasing of current U.S. manufactured goods, sourcing ?new to Walmart? U.S. manufactured goods, and supporting the reshoring to U.S. of goods the retailer already buys.
To learn more about Walmart?s U.S. manufacturing commitment or to apply to attend the ?Made in USA? Open Call and U.S. Manufacturing Summit on July 7-8, go to http://corporate.walmart.com/global-responsibility/us-manufacturing.