Travels of a T-shirt in a Global Economy explores the myriad of market factors influencing the manufacturing and distribution of a t-shirt from the beginning stages of the raw cotton in Texas, the tariffs involved in importing and exporting the t-shirts, to the eventual second hand t-shirt markets of the Tanzania mitumba industry. This book includes a comprehensive industry analysis of the five forces of competition, a look into the supposed free market economies of the world, and the pros and cons to the inevitable competitive race to the manufacturing bottom of the world. This paper includes an in-depth analysis of each of the five forces of competition concerning the cotton textile industry: industry rivals, threat of entry, supplier power, buyer power, and threat of substitutes.
Each phase of the cotton textile industry plays a role in the forces of competition, in order to understand the competitive cotton textile industry, a description of the various phases of the cotton textile industry is necessary. The production of cotton and cotton yarn, textile manufacturing, distribution of the t-shirt, and ultimately recycling are the key components of the cotton textile industry. Prior to the 1800s cotton was provided by England and then the United States started growing cotton. Ever since the 1800s the United States has been the primary provider of cotton to the global economy. The success of the United States in the exportation of cotton is due in part to the central location of the continent, ease of access to shipping lanes, climate, innovation in the technology of growing and harvesting, and aggressive governmental subsidies to farmers, and ease of access to cheap labor. Cotton farming started the race to the bottom and cheap labor has been a staple of the entire industry ever since.
Cheap labor and governmental involvement in free market capitalism are major characteristics of every
Bibliography: Rivoli, Pietra. The Travels of a T-shirt in the Global Economy: an Economist Examines the Markets, Power and Politics of World Trade. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2005. Print.