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More than 500 businesses from across the country will present their U.S.-made products June 28 to Wal-Mart Stores Inc. in its corporate headquarters of Bentonville, Ark., giving the companies the chance to have their products offered by the world’s largest retailer.
Walmart’s Open Call, now in its fourth year, is one way that the company invests in American jobs by aiding the growth of U.S. manufacturing. This year, almost half of all businesses attending Open Call self-identify as diverse, including 25 percent identifying as women-owned. Additionally, 2017 attendees hail from 47 states and Puerto Rico. Among the states with some of the largest contingents are California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Wisconsin.
“While finding products our customers want is a year-round focus for our buying teams, Walmart’s annual Open Call is a special opportunity to connect our buyers with companies that are manufacturing products in the U.S. and to identify new and unique product solutions,” noted Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart VP for U.S. sourcing and manufacturing.
With some companies pitching several products, more than 750 meetings are slated to take place with Walmart buyers representing a broad variety of product categories.
Among the companies that will get to pitch their products are Oceans 97 (restaurant-quality shrimp and seafood); Micah Specialty Foods (marinade); The Blonde Italian (Garden Garlic Seasoning); Haven Sales & Marketing (Gourmet Orange Chili Soy Sauce); Nuts & Cows (Buttery Pecan Butter); Mary’s Kitchen (sweet potato pie); C&C Foods (Sweet Savina Surprise sauce); and Pocket Gel (portable hair gel)
Walmart operates 11,695 stores under 59 banners in 28 countries, and ecommerce websites in 11 countries.