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Brief Published: 28 Jan 2013

Wal-Mart Announces Special US Initiatives


Keen to promote its commitment to addressing US concerns, American retailer Wal-Mart has announced it will hire more than 100,000 honourably discharged US military veterans over the next five years. It will also purchase $50bn worth of US-made goods over the next decade (about $5bn more per year than it currently spends).

In an announcement earlier this month, Wal-Mart’s US president and chief executive Bill Simon said that two-thirds of what the retailer purchases are “items that are made here, sourced here, or grown” in the US. But he would not divulge any more details behind the present plan, or how it compares to the retailer’s previous purchasing efforts of US goods.

Wal-Mart’s announcements come in the wake of an embattled holiday season. The retail chain weathered a backlash from consumers and employees over its extended holiday hours, as well as an alleged bribery scandal involving Mexican officials and the construction of stores in Mexico City and San Juan Teotihuacan.

Simon pointed to the current economic climate as the motivation for the retailer’s new policy. “At the heart of our national political conversation today is one issue: creating jobs to grow the economy,” he said. “We are meeting with our suppliers on domestic manufacturing and are making a strong commitment to move this forward.”

The New Americana: A Trend for Keeps explores how a renewed appreciation of products and styling linked to American-made goods is also supporting the movement – a trend which shows no sign of slowing down any time yet.