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AAFA Releases ApparelStats 2012 Report

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Reposted from the blog of the American Apparel and Footwear Association


AAFA Releases ApparelStats 2012 Report

Scott Elmore | October 2012 | AAFA blog

Arlington, VA – The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) today released its ApparelStats 2012 report, a snapshot of the U.S. apparel industry market trends for 2011.  ApparelStats 2012 examines business and trade information related to U.S. apparel consumption, production, employment, imports, and retail prices.

“Following the U.S. footwear industry’s surge in domestic manufacturing in 2011, the U.S. apparel industry followed suit with its own spike in domestic manufacturing,” said AAFA President and CEO Kevin M. Burke.  “In 2011, domestic apparel manufacturing grew 11.1 percent and, for the first time ever, domestic production’s share of the U.S. market grew, driving import penetration in the U.S. apparel market below 98 percent.  Despite continued shifts away from China as a sourcing option, China remains the largest supplier of apparel to the U.S. market supplying nearly 33.2 percent of apparel sold in the United States.”

“With more than 97 percent of apparel sold in the United States being made globally, trade remains an important issue for the U.S. apparel and footwear industry,” said Burke.  “In fact, nearly three million U.S. apparel industry workers and more than one million U.S. footwear industry workers count on trade for their jobs.”

Key Facts from ApparelStats 2012:

  • U.S. apparel consumption by volume for 2011 dropped 5.3 percent to 19.4 billion garments.  While consumption dropped slightly over the significant gains made in 2010, the decrease in consumption does not represent a return to the recession-level consumption experienced in 2008 and 2009.
  • While U.S. apparel consumption slightly declined in 2011, the value of sales grew by 4.9 percent to $283.7 billion at retail.  This growth reflects both the increase in retail prices driven by higher supply chain costs, including increases in materials, labor, and transportation, as well as consumers returning to purchases of apparel at higher price-points coming out of the recession.
  • 97.7 percent of apparel sold in the United States is made internationally, a 0.3 percent decline from 2010, which represents the first-ever decline in import penetration, or the amount of the U.S. apparel market supplied by imports.
  • China now represents the number 1 global market for U.S. cotton exports, the number 2 global market for U.S. yarn exports, and the number 3 global market for U.S. fabric exports.
  • On average, every American, including every man, woman, and child in the United States spent $910 on more than 62 garments in 2011.
  • Americans, on average, continue to spend an ever smaller percentage of their household income to buy more clothes.

ApparelStats is one of the many exclusive benefits offered for free to AAFA members.  Non-members may order ApparelStats 2012 for a nominal fee by contacting Darrell Sumpter at (703) 797-9050.  Complimentary reports are available to credentialed members of the media by contacting Scott Elmore at (703) 797-9056.

About AAFA

The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) is the national trade association representing apparel, footwear and other sewn products companies, and their suppliers, which compete in the global market.  AAFA’s mission is to promote and enhance its members’ competitiveness, productivity and profitability in the global market by minimizing regulatory, commercial, political, and trade restraints.  Learn how AAFA wears our mission at


3 Responses to “AAFA Releases ApparelStats 2012 Report”

  1. Bob Hall says:

    And let’s not forget this classic from their ShoeStats 2012 report:

    “To continue supporting more than one million American jobs related directly to the U.S. footwear industry and the countless others supported by the industry, the U.S. government must continue to reduce barriers to trade, including the immediate congressional passage of the Affordable Footwear Act. This common sense legislation would eliminate the hidden and regressive import taxes that only drive up the prices on low-cost and children’s shoes. Its passage directly benefits hardworking American families and supports jobs here in the United States while continue [sic] to protect the remaining footwear manufacturers in the United States.”

  2. Steve Martin says:

    If we ever want a REAL apparel and/or footwear sector in America again, we need to scream bloody murder when policy wonks talk like: “AAFA’s mission is to promote and enhance its members’ competitiveness, productivity and profitability in the global market…”

    98% of our apparel and footwear is IMPORTED GARBAGE. I knew it was bad, but this bad?? That should be the screaming headline here. Hello?


    For the Republic and Its Creator,

    Steve Martin
    Host, The Aroostook Watchmen Radio Show
    Over The Constitutional Radio Network
    780 AM in Monticello, 1700 AM in Lewiston, 88.1 FM in Westbrook, 88.1 FM in Portland, 88.1 FM in Orono, 96.5 FM in Brewer, Maine.

  3. Jim Schollaert says:

    Having worked closely on textile trade policy from the 1980’s to 2008, in the Trade Policy office of the Department of State, on Capitol Hill for N.C. Senator Helms, and finally as a lobbyist for true domestic textile manufacturers, I witnessed first hand, Kevin Burke, and his AAFA, working tirelessly (and unfortunately successfully) for decades to dismantle protections against predatory textile imports. For AAFA to issue a press release lauding a 0.3 percent decline in U.S. market penetration of foreign made apparel is the height of hypocrisy. The membership of AAFA has long been the principal rogues gallery of the offshorers and importers of predatory apparel imports.


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