While bass fishermen have mostly been waiting for the new lure, tradeshow introductions to hit the shelves, other information, which emanated from ICAST, may portend higher bait prices.

Reminding us of the likelihood that “low priced” lures may soon cost more and high-priced ones may go even higher is the September 2011 issue of Angling International. In the “Communique” section of the latest issue, we find that while everyone was fiddling with new gear, as stern warning was being issued to the trade by Michael Colopy, a global economist.

Because of changing leadership in China and a new attitude within that nation, Colopy was quoted as saying, “There is upward pressure on labor costs and workers are becoming more aggressive in demanding their rights for higher pay and more benefits.”

While the American worker often argues for similar circumstances, the fact is, consumers still prefer to pay $5 for a mass-produced lure and not $6, $7 or more. And the issue is not just with hard baits.

In the same issue of AI, there was a news story referring to Rapala moving 10 percent of its soft bait production out of China and off to Indonesia. Rapala’s CEO Jorma Kaslin was quoted as saying, “The cost of labor in China has been increasing for some time and the ability to provide low cost production and the availability of labor has been a challenge and will continue to be so in the future.”

And in case you haven’t been paying attention, the article reminded fishermen that Jarden Corporation, the owner of Pure Fishing, has already said it will be “moving some of its prodution back to North America.”


2 Responses to “Chinese bargain lure prices gone for good?”

Maybe those Chinese factory workers really SHOULD demand better working conditions. Who could blame them? Ask any US rep who’s been overseas to check prototypes, tour the factories, etc–they’ll tell you about workers painting lures all day in poorly ventilated facilities sans any protection whatsoever. You’d nearly pass out from all the toxic fumes upon entering such production areas; those workers huff that stuff on a daily basis (until poor health forces them to quit). But hey, it’s a job!

by George Kramer

But we love a bargain. One of the great ironies of capitalism.