America Vs China The Toy Revolution
Over the decades the toy industry has changed significantly. European artisans development of toys made from wood parts slowly evolved into an industry. Handmade wooden toy parts were carefully crafted to appear life-like. Historians are still discovering toy wheels from ancient cultures proving the weight toys carry in society.
What will researchers uncover about today’s culture centuries from now when they dig up our popular toys? Most likely the “Made In China” label will symbolize the toy revolution in which sourcing to China became a way of life in America. Within two short decades China has become the number one producer of toys and their parts. The 1990’s introduction to cutting edge video gaming technology altered the dynamics of the toy industry. Every child wanted a gaming system. Millions were sold during the holidays. The name ‘Nintendo’ and ‘Sega’ became leaders in the gaming market. By the end of the decade not only was it the hottest toy but several new versions had been released. This rapid modernization of older models of gaming systems has steadfast the continuous growth of the brand. Maintaining high demand and honing the forefront of technology. Today Nintendo’s Wii, XBOX 360, and PlayStation 3 is dominating the market. The future versions probably keep them in the lead in the toy industry as our nation become more tech savvy.
The plastic industry switched the focus from wood products to plastic. Toys began to shift in a new direction. Instead of quality sturdy wood toy parts crafted with unfinished wood machines manufactured plastic molded toys. The process was faster and allowed companies to produce their product on a larger scale appealing to the masses. Import from China was in the lead. The 50’s brought us the infamous Barbie Doll which is still in production today. Plastic toys began to rule the world. The GI Joe action figures, Transformers, and Teenage Mutant Turtles toys boomed in each following decade. Around the 80’s when the American economy started to recline outsourcing to foreign countries like Mexico and China become more prevalent.
After the gaming revolution more and more American factories started to cut costs shipping their work overseas. China’s miles of factories filled with workers efficiently bustling among the production lines are making toys that will be shipped back to the U.S. for sell this Christmas. As the manufacturing factories close across the nation and reduce staff the toy orders are sent to foreign factories. This procedure saves major companies billions of dollars but the American people suffer from lost of jobs. The apparent toy revolution takes its toll on the middle working class a demographic that comprises a large section of the U.S. Although, China is winning the war in the toy industry only time can tell if America will bounce back. The resurfacing of more classic toys could be a positive sign. Artisans who craft wood might make a mark on the industry in days to come. The technology infused in toys today are eliminating childrens need for imagination. Going back to basic nostalgic games will help our children become kids again.