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Made in China Not Worth Hassle for Small Firms Returning to U.S.

When Sonja Zozula and Jerry Anderson founded LightSaver Technologies Inc. in 2009, everyone told them they should make their emergency lights for homeowners in China.

After two years of outsourcing to factories there, last winter they shifted production to Carlsbad, California, about 30 miles (48 kilometers) from their home in San Clemente. "It’s probably 30 percent cheaper to manufacture in China," Anderson says. Besides hassles including shipping, "it’s a question of, ‘How do I value my time at three in the morning when I have to talk to China?’" he says.