Research from the Manufacturing Advisory Service found that many SMEs are keen to bring manufacturing back to the UK.
Demand from UK customers for environmentally friendly products and wanting to support local businesses has increased over the last few years, meaning UK manufactured goods has seen a revival.
But what else is turning many UK businesses to return to production here in Britain? The potential of better quality, shortened lead times and decreased margins on overseas production?
Apart from these key factors, many British companies pride themselves on knowing their product inside out, from start to finish, and this is something impossible to achieve when it is made in another country.
Kate Hills, the founder of Make It British, said: “It is much easier to work with a British factory that is on your doorstep and you don’t have to fly thousands of miles to see.”
For Julie Deane, the founder of Cambridge Satchel Company, it was important that she would make her bags in the UK. She said: “It was really important to me to feel that I know the product from start to finish.”
Having now worked in partnership with huge brands, she wonders whether this would have still happened if she had taken out production elsewhere.
“On one side, going overseas would have meant I wouldn’t have had the production constraint, so we could have grown even faster and broken new markets faster,” she said.
“But would there have been a demand for the Cambridge satchel that is made in Vietnam or China?” she asks. “I don’t think it would have been as special, it wouldn’t have caught the imagination of people.”
On a practical note, manufacturing here provides a solution with regards to reducing our environmental impact, as the company is able to control their own footprint.
Manufacturing in the UK provides the agility that is important when sudden changes occur, and enables a companies who are working towards a common goal to efficiently provide quality assured products to their customers.
Being able to have a flexible approach in fulfilling initial concepts from thought to activation not only provides the customer with peace of mind, but boosts economy and innovation.