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Finding British-made products is biggest challenge for consumers who want to buy British

Finding British-made products is the biggest challenge facing consumers who want to buy British, according to a survey of over 1,000 people recently carried out by Make it British.

FINDING British-made goods is a challenge for consumers

We wanted to find out what shoppers really think when it comes to buying British. So we conducted a survey of over one thousand people to get their thoughts.

This is the biggest survey of its kind and it gives us some valuable insights into what the British public think about buying British-made products.

Trying to buy british-made goods post brexit


One of the most interesting finds of the survey was that 50% of shoppers are trying to buy more British-made products since the UK’s decision to leave the EU.

perceive british-made products to be good quality


It also confirms that people perceive British-made products to be better quality and worth paying more for.

Over 77% of those questioned said that if they knew a product was made in Britain, they would believe it to be of good quality.

This compares to 60% in a similar survey Make it British carried out in 2013.

willing to pay more for a product made in britain


Around 93% of those surveyed said they would be willing to pay more for a product made in Britain compared to buying a similar product made outside the UK.

This is more than double that of the survey findings five years ago when 43% said they would pay more for a British-made product.

This survey confirms that British-made stands for quality and shoppers are willing to pay more for a product they can trust.

There’s a growing desire to buy more British, but a big challenge is where to find products that are made in Britain.

When it comes down to building trust, knowing that a retailer is selling goods that are made in the UK is still one of the main things that can give shoppers confidence in buying them.” 


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  1. george blumfield on April 19, 2018 at 12:09 pm

    If a person purchases British made clothing, it is very high quality and worth paying more than Chinese made stuff. British and American made items are sized correctly and of more quality. I am 85 years old and have worn British items all my adult like. They excel!

  2. Ray w on April 19, 2018 at 6:10 pm

    Just bought British made pyjamas- glad I did, good quality and fit. Worth paying more and saving shipping miles, keeping jobs and skills in the country. Keep up the good work promoting our manufacturing skills.

    • Valerie on April 24, 2018 at 10:28 am

      I like your reference to saving ‘shipping miles’. I wanted to research this topic for my Masters degree in 1979 and was told I couldn’t do this because… wait for it… they ‘didn’t know how to mark it’!
      I met a young man 25 years later who had just completed his on the environmental costs of shipping goods across the world. This element is still not taken seriously so hopefully it may resurface and be a positive to come out of Brexit.

  3. Bliss of London on April 19, 2018 at 8:50 pm

    This is good to read this! We manufacture leather products and have seen significant increase in demand from Asia ironically as well as the home market for British Made quality products especially belts which is fantastic! Bliss of London

  4. KARL B on April 20, 2018 at 6:42 am

    The increased committment of the British public to buy British manufactured goods is heartening and long overdue however your survey finding that we struggle to identify sources of home produced goods says it all. Make it British does an amazing job in raising awareness of British manufacturing but our government’s contribution is woefully inadequate frankly. If they are serious about rebalancing our economy more towards UK manufacturing, they are going to have to do a lot more to sell it to the public by publicising the benefits of skills retention, future careers and balance of payments improvement for UK citizens as well as the avoidance of the serious adverse environmental and social impacts that are occurring in countries with low regulation/low wage manufacturing.

  5. Jeff Sloley on April 20, 2018 at 9:10 am

    I am one of those willing to pay more for UK made goods and willing to spend time looking for them. For non-essential items I will often go without if I can’t find UK made stuff. I’m not a martyr, I just wouldn’t enjoy them.

    The challenge is finding what I want. Perhaps manufacturers could get together to agree how they identify “Made in the UK” on their websites and product pages. Make it quick and easy for consumers to find you.

    Sock Shop does this well with a dedicated list of UK made products (No I don’t have any relationship with them, I would like more to copy them).

    For stuff, especially food, that will never be UK sourced, like frozen fruits, I look for “Packaged in the UK”.

  6. Marc SIMONNET on April 20, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    Hello Kate

    Very interesting survey
    I am french, living in Paris

    I am used to come very often in England (not enough because I dream to live in your country) and look at your web site for my shopping !! Just because I am looking for English goods (men clothings and so on ??)

    I would say that buying English goods for English peoples is
    -good for the economy
    -good for employment
    -good for the Earth
    – not neccessarily more expensive (due to the currencies change)

    And as I am used to say « you have to be rich to buy cheap !!! »

    Carry on and don’t give up


  7. Gail H on April 22, 2018 at 11:26 am

    Great to hear so many positive comments and results from the survey about buying British! I do hope the trend continues and the government wakes up to the need for more support for British manufacturers. However, retailers are key to solving the problem of making British goods available to consumers and need to be encouraged to stock more British goods. I have noticed some companies who have transferred production to Asia or Eastern Europe don’t pass on associated cost savings! I know they have to make profits but sometimes the margin must be phenominal and don’t know how some consumers can even think about paying hundreds of pounds for clothes made in countries where workers are paid so little. As Jeff S say,s it would be very helpful if goods clearly indicated where they are made, on websites as well as on the products. Too many imports to the UK come from far afield, particularly Asia, and as Karl B says above, the container ships used are major polluters of the environment. For my part I find “The British Products Directory” which is available online very helpful for finding various things. I also find Christmas & country fairs good sources for UK made presents. Great work “Make it British”!

  8. JUDITH DICKINSON on April 22, 2018 at 2:50 pm

    I think we need to go back several years to look at the Buy British campaign. Ok slightly more than several years but those who are old enough to remember it will understand. I try to find British products and support British producers and shops. I intend to make greater efforts as we approach and pass the Brexit deadlines.

  9. Jay on May 2, 2018 at 10:42 pm

    I think one of the problems with the High Street Clothing Retailers is that they are now owned by Financial Institutions who unfortunately are interested in profit margins rather than product, style or quality. I believe this is a major factor why they are all struggling. They have become boring, lack real style and are of poor quality.

  10. Jay on May 2, 2018 at 11:07 pm

    Should have ended last comment with the statement that I would like to see a return of the individually owned stores with their products made in BRITAIN as stop all this cheap foreign trash coming in to this county.

  11. Bridget Vickers on May 21, 2020 at 8:45 am

    Promoting ‘Made in Britain’ is so important and highlights the need to support local business who employ local people. Brexit certainly prompted an analysis of where goods are sourced. Often this is difficult to ascertain when shopping. As someone who lives in England I have noticed that whilst Scotland and Wales and even NI are allowed to indicate on goods (particularly food items) a source of origin, English goods are affixed with Made in Great Britain. I know the English don’t have their own Parliament and we are basically a Colony of the UK Government (only Nation in Europe without their own Parliament)it would be nice to be allowed to buy English goods if possible and really support local industry. Just saying.

  12. Michael Klein on June 8, 2020 at 9:03 am

    I fully agree that it should be easier to identify British made products. As citizen of an EU country it is important to promote the EU economy and support EU companies.
    A database with UK products and services helps to avoid investing in these items. While it is easy to not buy a Dyson or not replacing Trend or Titman machinery and tools in our workshops avoiding a UK produced Toyota or choosing non-UK pharmaceutical products when there is an EU alternative available is not as easy.
    A hard Brexit that we prepare for by eliminating dependence on UK based business relations will identify and de-promote UK products due to tax induced price increase. But a database of all UK produced items and services would help to prepare for the transition

  13. David on April 1, 2021 at 8:27 pm

    Buying British is of course fraught with ethical as well as pragmatic hurdles, if you buy British made clothing for example, then cotton garments from T-shirts to jeans aren’t grown here neither will your cortton bed linen and it’s unlikely any silk goods either . Unless you buy antique , second hand or vintage you’re also unlikely to be helping the air miles and environment . When I was young we never ate strawberries other then during Wimbledon week, roses couldn’t be purchased 12 months a year and lamb was only available during the spring. So eating seasonally and not buying foreign grown goods is a good way to be more environmentally friendly and help UK producers ( Roses grown in Africa for UK supermarkets use EU banned pesticides known to cause cancers amongst the workers ) and inexpensive all year new potatoes from Egypt are grown using water extracted from ancient underground fishers which will not exist in 20″years time . Of course tea and coffee and stuff like bananas are things we are u able to grow commercially but supporting British farmers and producers as much as possible and buying seasonally , is not only worth the effort it’s helping leave a better planet for your children and grandchildren….

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