Moog Music Says Chinese Tariffs Could Force Layoffs & Possible Overseas Relocation


Employee-owned Asheville, NC-based instrument manufacturer Moog Music says the 25 percent tariff on Chinese circuit boards and associated components taking effect on July 6, 2018 will bring havoc to its business.

In an urgent appeal sent to its customer base, which was issued after American motorcycle manufacturer Harley-Davidson announced it was considering moving some of its production outside of the U.S. to avoid tariffs, the famed synth manufacturer founded in 1967 by inventor and engineer Robert Moog, predicted that the tariff could forever change their business.

“Tariffs will immediately and drastically increase the cost of building our instruments, and have the very real potential of forcing us to lay off workers and could (in a worst case scenario) require us to move some, if not all, of our manufacturing overseas.”

Related: We Took the Moog Factory Tour And It Was Awesome

While the tariff looks like a done deal, Moog Music is asking supporters to send a letter of support to four North Carolina politicians (see below).

Dear (Congressman or Representative):

I am writing you on behalf of Moog Music, a company of 100 employee-owners, based in Asheville, North Carolina. I am urgently contacting you about the recently announced 25% tariff on Chinese goods.

In case you are not familiar with Moog, they manufacture the world’s leading analog synthesizers used by artists including but not limited to Michael Jackson,The Beatles, Radiohead, Stevie Wonder and many others.

Roughly half of the circuit boards and associated components for Moog’s instruments come from China. This tariff would significantly limit their ability to manufacture synthesizers, and could put many of their employee-owners out of a job.

As an employee-owned company with a 60-year legacy in American manufacturing, Moog constantly strives to keep a balance between domestically- and internationally-sourced parts, so that they can continue employing people from their local community in Asheville, North Carolina.

Moog sources circuit boards from US suppliers whenever possible, paying up to 30% over the price of the same circuit boards made overseas. However, whether they buy circuit boards in the US or overseas, the majority of the raw components still come from China. Therefore, Moog will be unable to avoid this substantial cost increase because of the tariffs.

These tariffs will immediately and drastically increase the cost of building Moog instruments, forcing them to lay off American workers and will require Moog to move some, if not all, of their manufacturing overseas.

I do not want to see the end of Moog’s 60-year legacy in American manufacturing. I do not want their employee-owners left without jobs. I want American workers to continue have the opportunity to support their families and their community.

I implore you to convince the President that these Chinese tariffs cause serious damage to American workers like those at Moog and to rescind them immediately.

Thank you,

(Your Name)

North Carolina Congressional Representatives:

Mark Meadows
1024 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
(202) 225-6401

Patrick McHenry
160 Midland Avenue
Black Mountain, NC 28711
(828) 669-0600

North Carolina Senators:

Richard Burr
151 Patton Avenue
Suite 204
Asheville, NC 28801 – Choose topic “TRADE”
(828) 350-2437

Thom Tillis
185 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510 – Choose topic “TRADE”
(202) 224-6342

Image by Darren Ressler

Darren Ressler

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