While we may not have the capacity or population to produce everything we need in Australia, what we do make has a reputation for being top-quality. When you buy Australian Made your dollar goes a long way to supporting the Australian lifestyle, your gear performs and sustains many years of rigour, plus you're also injecting life directly into our economy.
Just what Australian Made stands for can be a little fuzzy sometimes, it would be nice to think that it means 100% of the materials used and the locality of manufacture are wholly Australian. For many products this is true, for others, there is a crossover with some products being made in Australia from materials sourced overseas. At Snowys, being an Aussie company, we like to support Australian made wherever and whenever we can, and we want to make it easy for you to understand what Australian made camping gear is available by showcasing those products all right here on this page, in one easy spot!
A small percentage of almost any Aussie made camping product comes from or has ties to an overseas company in some form, even if the product bears the official Australian Made badge. YKK zips are used in most quality camping gear but the actual zip is made in the US and there are no comparable manufacturers in Australia. The thread used to assemble material goods as well as components like plastic clips and metal poles are often sourced from an overseas supplier.
Kinetik Technology (KTI) design and manufacture EPIRB's and PLB's in Melbourne and utilise local industry, but while they build their own internal circuitry, many of the small electronic components used can only be sourced from abroad. Travel Buddy stoves are designed and manufactured in Bendigo, VIC largely from Australian materials, but a few components like screws, switches and thermostats need to be sourced from overseas. The canvas Blacksmith Camping Supplies use is made in an Australian canvas mill, but the cotton needs to be sent overseas first to be made into yarn as there are no yarn manufacturers in Australia.
Finding something that is 100% sourced and produced in Australia is rare, but by having an understanding of what the labels mean, you can make an informed choice if you are wanting to buy Australian products.
- John Andrews making Murchison River Swags in Geraldton WA for nearly 40 years.
Purely to support the Australian economy, which is more important than ever during these challenging times. Buying Australian made supports Australian businesses, which in turn pays Australian wages and keeps those dollars in our country. Often, with our smaller more independent businesses, every dollar you spend with them contributes to the payment of family and household expenses.
Buying Australian also ensures confidence in the quality and safety of the product you are purchasing, on account of the high regulatory standards here in Australia. Australian products usually come with local product support and manufacturers are required to provide guarantees and warranties to protect the consumer.
You'll also be helping to reduce our collective carbon footprint. Australia has strict environmental regulations which means our manufacturing processes are likely to be more sustainable, plus you are minimising the packaging and shipping resources required for imported products.
While there may be a load of small manufacturers around the country, these are the brands we at Snowys associate with and/or recommend.
These brands either produce predominantly Australian-made products or a majority of their product range is Australian-made, however, they don't all necessarily display the Australian Made logo.
|Blacksmith Camping Supplies||Murchison River Swags||Candy Canvas Swags|
|Southern Metal Spinners Camp Ovens||Supa Peg||AOS Swags|
|Hillbilly Camp Cooking Gear||Travel Buddy Ovens||REDARC|
|Expedition 134||Supafit Seat Covers||GME Radios|
|Tred 4WD Recovery Devices||Ampfibian Caravan Adapters||Jimmy’s Thunderbox|
|Scorpro Explorer Box||Thermal Ice Icepacks||Staun Tyre Deflators|
|Black Duck Seat Covers||Bushman Repellants||Trayon Campers|
|Maxtrax Recovery Tracks||Mike's Beef Jerky|
A company displaying the official Australian Made symbol has paid a fee and met criteria outlined in both the Australian Consumer Law and the Australian Made, Australian Grown (AMAG) Logo Code of Practice. For all the details on this check out the Australian Made website here.
There are a few variations of the Australian Made logo and it’s worth making yourself aware of the differences. There are two catagories that are most relevant to camping products:
Australian Made - means that the product needs to have substantially transpired in Australia with at least 50 per cent of their production costs remaining within the country.
Product of Australia – a more premium claim which requires each significant component to have originated from Australia, and virtually all production processes completed herein.
Buying a brand that claims to be Australian owned likely means you are buying a product that is made overseas. Although the company behind the product would be based in Australia, the production of that product happens abroad, mostly due to the huge difference in manufacturing costs. For this reason they cannot display the Australian Made logo.
Bushman Fridges, for example, are a fully owned Australian company who have their products manufactured overseas with tools designed and manufactured by Bushman in Australia. Their design, product support and quality control team are all Australian based.
On the flip side of this, a company that is owned and operated overseas can still produce a product that is made in Australia. Products displaying the logo with the caption "Australian Made & Owned" means the product was made in Australia by a company owned in Australia.
This is largely due to higher wages, higher transport costs, and higher rents etc. For the most part, it costs more to do business here in Australia than it does overseas.
However, we often produce better quality goods on account of the strict regulations to which we are accountable. So while the product may seem more expensive upfront, you’ll be saving money in the long run both directly by having a product that lasts longer, and indirectly by strengthening the Australian economy.
It comes back to that old analogy 'you get what you pay for', and when it comes to Australian made you're usually paying for top quality gear, that's made specifically for use in our own backyard.