ukmade – About this website
The “ukmade” website is about products that are made in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. UK made in other words.
I set up this blog (website) because these days when I go to buy something, almost anything, more often than not it is made abroad. This has been the case to some extent for ages – made in Japan, made in Hong Kong, made in Taiwan, and more recently made in China but nowadays it is far more noticeable.
The things I list are generally products I recommend based on having used or purchased them myself or having some other knowledge of them. I am keen to promote goods that are designed, manufactured or assembled in the UK or preferably all three; with materials sourced here too where possible. Stuff that is – Made in England, Made in Wales, Made in Scotland and Made in Northern Ireland. I want to encourage you to buy British made goods or more precisely products that are made in the British Isles (excluding the Republic of Ireland) and British Overseas Territories.
Japan (the world’s second biggest economy) still make lots of stuff, as does the USA (the world’s biggest economy) and they are both countries where customers are proud to buy goods from their own country.
It is undoubtedly better to buy local, reducing your carbon footprint, and of course political geography has little to do with the environment.
I believe we have made a fundamental mistake economically in not maintaining our industrial base which is why we are suffering far more than the French or Germans in the present austere times. Also I suspect that workers in say Pakistan have far fewer rights than their British counterparts. Still this is the free market vision of successive governments. When the manufacturing process is exported from the UK to developing countries that is invariably to cut costs; it’s very likely the manufacturer is also reducing the costs of materials and therefore the quality of the product too.
Most British exports and imports these days are within the European Union / European Economic Area, but when buying non-British made I would also encourage you to look at goods manufactured within the Commonwealth first.
When you buy British I would also encourage you to buy British goods that are packaged in Britain using packaging material that is made in Britain too.
Fortunately most of the food we buy in the UK is still grown and packaged in the UK; but not all of it.
Of course I recognise that international trade is vital to the UK and that trade is a two way street. I don’t advocate protectionism and there is nothing wrong with buying stuff from abroad.
The UK is the world’s sixth largest manufacturer. Manufacturing is the third largest sector in the UK.
It’s not about spending your money at home in a xenophobic way. It’s about dispelling the myth that we no longer make anything and don’t develop anything wonderful.
There used to be labels on everything saying where it was made (Made in China; Made in England, Made in the UK; etc.). This is no longer the case (although many manufacturers do still label where their product was made).
If you are like me then you want to make informed decisions about what you buy, and you’re interested in the provenance and sustainability of products. Local sourcing plays a part in that, and I’m proud to support quality British design and manufacturing.
A good logo for manufacturers to use might be MADE BETTER IN BRITAIN.
I like the idea of buying British, when the products are what I need. The quality is often better, it is better for the environment and it helps our economy.
This website doesn’t have all British manufacturers listed by any means but I hope it will be interesting and useful. There are links to suppliers and there is a more general links page.
Please buy British and please enjoy my website.
September 2012 (updated April 2014).
The Cover photograph is a cropped image of a picture taken in November 1998 at an exhibition of Mt. Everest expedition memorabilia in a museum in Nepal and shows the “Union Jack Hoisted on Everest by First Successful Everest Expedition – 1953” – September 2012, source https://www.flickr.com/photos/47612622@N08/6360214219/