Quote Originally Posted by donh54 View Post
That's not the way it works.

If I want to buy something from a manufacturer (Chinese or Lithuanian - doesn't matter!) I go and see what there product is like. If it meets my quality demands, we then start doing a deal on price. If it doesn't, you go elsewhere. As you said earlier, unless you are ordering big quantities, you would be priced out of the market by demanding a factory re-tool just for your specific items.

As I said earlier, most major factories produce a range of products, with varying price points depending on the quality.

(Names used here are for illustrative purposes only) A classic case is the MAF sensors made by VDO/Siemens. manufacturers like Rover, etc demand an accuracy level within a certain range. All products off the line go through a test phase. If the accuracy range is within tolerance, that one goes into the "Factory" bin (Premium price). If it just misses, it may go into the "OEM" bin, and is bought by the likes of Bearmach, who has set a particular price/quality point with VDO/Siemens (lower than premium price). Anything below that price point, but not actually faulty as such, goes to the "bargain basement" bin, where companies such as Britpart and other house brands do their shopping.

Apart from the fact that they now have at least three different customer groups for their product, the manufacturer can also stroke their green credentials by pointing out their much-reduced waste stream. The fact that most of the bargain basement ones will end up in the waste stream somewhere else fairly quickly, is not an issue that gets highlighted, of course.

This is why you can find all sorts of car parts that look the same, but the quality (and price) may vary enormously. Think shocks, suspension components (that's scary!). Not a good idea to buy purely on price, but sadly, a significant proportion of the market does, and that's why you can't buy much stuff that is Made in Australia anymore. As soon as one company gained a competitive advantage by getting stuff made in a cheaper country, the others had to do so as well, or risk losing market share. Tariffs used to be a safeguard for those issues, but with the advent of free trade agreements, most of them were lifted.
That's exactly what I mean? Maybe my broken English is causing confusion....

I will pay more for product made in Australia but not sold by Australian company. A company owned by Australian means nothing to me...."Made in Australia" does.