Buying products from China?

I know that in third world countries a lot of workers are treated like slaves so I decided that, since I have no idea if the workers of a particular company are treated well, I will not buy products from third world countries (or, at least I will try not to), so I wanted to ask your opinion:

  • do you believe it is a sin to buy products from China?
  • it would be immoral to keep buying some products from, for example, China until I find an alternative?
  • it is very hard to buy only from fair trades companies, because I live in Italy and we don’t have a lot of them and buying clothes from the USA is expensive. So I thought that maybe buying products that are manufactured in Europe and USA might be a good alternative since those countries protect workers. Still, I know that, for example, “made in Italy” doesn’t mean that an item is 100% made in Italy, it is possible that a certain % of it is made elsewhere and I have no chance to know where and in what conditions. It would be a sin to buy such products, even if I know that there is a chance that a part of them is made from ill treated workers?
    Thank you!!

Purchasing a product made in a foreign country where workers are treated unfairly is, at most, remote participation in any sin thereof. You cannot be expected to understand labor conditions in every country.

(Note also that “exploitive” labor conditions are not per se unfair, as such conditions are often precisely what brings jobs to these places.)

Now, if labor conditions in a given nation were so bad as to become an international stink, that would be a different matter.



From a practical standpoint, people have tried to stop buying products not made in the U.S., particularly from China, and if you do an Internet search you’ll probably find a few results. I think there’s been at least one book written about it. The bottom line is that it takes a great deal of time, is pretty doggone expensive, and even with time and money it’s almost impossible to do.

Sorry, didn’t see that you’re in Italy. Things might be different there.

I would agree with the other posters here, regarding what is factually or not factually known of employees being treated badly. I listen to my conscience in these matters.

I definitely have opinions about the lack of quality produced in other countries and even the US now. Which might make for an interesting thread, But I do not want to get off topic.

Well, I don’t know if it is a sin, but some of the items that I bought that were made in China or Mexico were defective. I tried to get Walmart to take back a Fry Daddy that was defective and they gave me the run-around until I forgot about it. Recently I bought some mirrows for my car that were made in Mexico that were so defective that I sent them back. However, QVC did return my money so they were honest. The greater sin is that some companies are taking money for defective products. China has a really big, big military that they have build on the American dime. At the same time-try to find products that are actually “Made in America.” There is a little bit of sin to go all around.

I agree with you, products from China are often poor quality, especially if they are inexpensive. I believe that buying products from USA and Europe is better, usually they are better quality.

You get what you pay for.


I won’t buy any products for pets from China.

It might depend on what the product is for me. I would prefer to buy products made in the USA.

And this is one of the reason why nearly all the major news networks will not air stories about investigative journalism in this area, I remember there was a big stink about Nike, NBC, the Olympics, and the network having a previous deal with Nike and all the NBC reporters were going to wearing NIKE coats, etc on air during coverage, a reporter had found serious labor issues where these were made, the reporter was fired and the story was dumped.

I have no doubt things like this happen quite often, but in the US, greed trumps everything.

Ive always been curious what would happen if the US ever ended up at war with China, Walmart and many others would basically be forced to shut down or faces charges.

If our nation went to war with China, nuclear weapons would be used, our economy would already be in shreds due to Chinese dollar dumping, and chain stores’ Chinese inventories would be beside the point.


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