From the Deuter Website:
Where are Deuter backpacks made?
In the early 90’s, we realized that if Deuter was to survive as a competitive brand known for high-quality equipment (based on technical sewing skills), we could no longer manufacture in Germany. Deuter established a relationship with a single supplier in 1991 based in Vietnam– that marked the beginning of a close partnership starting with just 35 sewing machines. Today, there are over 2,500 employees who work on the exclusive production of all Deuter packs and accessories. Through the years, mutual understanding, close cooperation, and the sharing of ideas has turned a business partnership into a true friendship.
Why would I post that you ask? Well, after all, I’m thankful:
Nov 4th: Today I am thankful for the children. If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t be able to buy cheap foreign-made clothes and outdoor gear. My heartfelt thanks to you, thirteen year olds in Vietnam. You guys sure can sew.
While I don’t believe that all manufacturing plants overseas use child labor, certainly some of them do, and as Americans we cheerfully turn a blind eye to the labor conditions of those we will never meet, if it means going to WalMart and buying a pack of underwear for $10 instead of $40.
When I mentioned that I have a Deuter backpack on one of the hiking boards, I was met with scorn and derision. “Oh, they used to be made in Germany but now they are made in Vietnam! I would never buy from them.”
We live in a global economy today. If your competitors product is thirty percent less expensive than yours, you either make concessions or find ways to produce it cheaper, or you go under. I like my backpack, I don’t care where it was made. I do wish I knew a little more about them before buying one. Mine is consistently one of the larger ones on our trips (only because when I was backpack shopping, the 75L version was on sale for the same price as the 65L version – so it was like getting 10 liters of space for FREE!). Mine looks very much like the one above, except it’s blue, and looks a little different. Oddly, backpacks are a lot like cars, they change a little every year, so this year’s models and colors are slightly different than last year’s.
I did run into someone on our last hike with an 80Liter pack, so I was glad not to be the only one in the “big boy” league. Oddly – a lot of people who complain “you’re pack is too big!” carry 40 liter packs with stuff strapped all over the outside. I beg to differ – I think your pack is too small. But it’s on YOUR back, so what do I care?
So, today is November 5th, and I haven’t come up with something to be thankful for.
Netflix. I’m thankful for Netflix. A few years ago our only decent video store in town closed, and I was forced to either go to blockbuster, rent movies from a glorified Coke machine, or try Netflix.
I love Netflix. I wish that damn overpriced video store would have shut its doors earlier. Blockbuster is now gone (woo hoo!) so just about the ONLY choice around is to use Netflix or the glorified Coke machine. If Time Warner ever decides to cap my internet usage at a certain GB level, I’ll be screwed. I watch more Netflix movies and old TV shows than I do modern TV. Why?
Because today’s Television SUCKS. Besides a few educational shows, there’s nothing decent on any more. So thank you, Netflix.