FDRA Releases First Sourcing Forecast

The Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America on Thursday released the association’s first footwear sourcing forecast.

The inaugural edition of the forecast found that the average cost increase for producing a pair of shoes rose 12 percent in 2011 over the previous year.

The study also found that imported footwear from China to the U.S. fell in 2011 to the lowest point in seven years, accounting for 85.3 percent of all footwear. The result of that shift is that Vietnam is becoming a more important footwear player, as the U.S. currently imports 7 percent of its footwear from Vietnam, and that number is expected to climb to 13 percent in the near future.

FDRA President Matt Priest said the forecast was designed to help shoe companies remain competitive and to supply them with information to help them make the most informed decisions possible regarding their sourcing.

“Creating certainty in the supply chain has been very difficult for many footwear companies over the past several years,” Priest said in a statement. “FDRA’s Footwear Sourcing Forecast is designed to help develop a clear line of sight for our members and the industry as a whole. It is my hope that this annual report will become a guide to those developing sourcing strategies that better meet the needs of their consumers.”

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