A growing number of businesses are betting their futures that Bay Area consumers are willing to pay more for goods produced locally. As recently as 1996, Gap and Levis Strauss were among the San Francisco-based garment companies that employed some 14,000 workers. That number has declined steadily since then, to just over 1,600 in 2013. But a group of local entrepreneurs and designers is bucking the "fast fashion" trend and producing everything from jeans to hoodies here, in the Bay Area. What are the benefits and challenges of manufacturing locally? Are you willing to pay more for the Made in the Bay Area label?
Buying Into Bay Area Manufacturing
Kate Sofis, executive director of SFMade
Ulrich Conrad Simpson, founder and designer of Ubi-Ind, a denim apparel company
Bayard Winthrop, founder of American Giant, an American-made apparel brand
Fif Ghobadian, CEO and co-founder of Road Twenty-Two, a San Francisco-based clothing company