You should know why you might be paying a little bit extra for Kleynimals. Kleynimals toy keys and flatware are always made in the USA. While going through the process of creating the toy keys, I knew that I could probably have them manufactured in China and save some money. However, it is important to me (and hopefully to you too) to have toys and products that are American made for a number of reasons. I want to ensure that high quality, safe materials and fair labor practices are used in the manufacturing process. I also want to support the American economy.
From inception, Kleynimals has sourced small, independent, American companies to help with manufacturing. For the first four years of existence, I “piecemealed” the manufacturing out of my home. I received parts from two family owned companies. I then drove the American made parts back and forth between assembly, welding and cleaning in small batches. Kleynimals were assembled and washed by a local non-profit organization that supports developmentally disabled adults in living self-directed lives (The Providence Center). They were welded and polished by a talented man (also a proud Veteran and a good friend) in Baltimore, often times with the assistance of his daughter. This process was truly a Labor of Love.
Starting in 2015, I was fortunate to find an American company that could do all of the manufacturing under one roof, thus saving me a lot of driving and sorting, and allowing me to meet a larger demand. Kleynimals are now made in upstate New York by Sherrill Manufacturing, another independently owned company with a strong commitment to creating American jobs. You can read a great article about their story here: NY Times – Setting a Made-in-the-USA Table
I am proud to say that I figured out a way to make sure that my friends at The Providence Center are still helping with the process… I now credit them with tying the tag onto our reusable packaging.