Do you need a mousetrap? An alpaca? An emu, a rifle, a drone, an app, an insulated concrete log, a buckskin beer coozie, a candle, or a cap? You need look no further than Montana. And frankly, the above is just the tip of the iceberg. The Montana Department of Commerce lists some thirty-four hundred participants in the Made in Montana Program, and who knows how many products each of those participants create.
In order to qualify as “Made in Montana,” a product must be grown, created, made, or enhanced in the state (resulting in 50% or more in added-value). The program’s product range includes predictable goods like jewelry, artwork, candles (an incredible amount of candles), jerky, cheese, and jams, as well as some more surprising (to me anyway) goods, like accounting software, hunting rifles, and the aforementioned mousetrap. The Made in Montana program does an amazing job promoting Montana-made goods and services. I very much doubt that there is a store in the state that doesn’t sell at least a few items featuring the program’s little blue sticker. Nonetheless, some of the products can be quite hard to find in stores, which makes sense, given the intensely local nature of the program. Fear not, however, because nearly all “Made in Montana” items are available through the program’s online market at madeinmontanausa.com.
The online product directory is especially useful for those poor benighted souls who have the misfortune to live beyond the state’s borders. Why anyone would want to do such a thing is beyond me, but a considerable number of people actually live outside of Montana (including, alas, yours truly). For us, the Made in Montana marketplace is an indispensable tool for making our lives a little less mediocre by giving us access to Montana-made products. For the lucky stiffs actually blessed to live in the state, the little blue sticker is a way of knowing that you are choosing quality. And take it from one who knows, you should feel a little burst of happiness every time you see that little blue ring with its stylized mountains and wheat fields on a shelf.
Do you need more ideas of Montana Made products? check out this link from the Billings Gazette.