ANTIGO (WAOW)--The benefits of outsourcing labor overseas is not worth the trade off according to Mike Sheldon, president of Mepps Fishing Lures.
"It's cheaper to go overseas but you lose control of quality" Sheldon told Newsline 9.
Using American labor makes his Antigo-based company unique in the competitive business of manufacturing fishing lures.
"It's a little unusual to still be making fishing tackle in the United States, especially lures. Most of our competitors, in fact I can't think of any that are not doing their manufacturing over seas now" Sheldon said.
Mepps employs over 50 people in their Antigo world headquarters who manufacture, label, package and ship their 4,000 different products. Millions of fishing lures made in Antigo are sold worldwide.
Keeping employee morale high, Mepps has many employees who have been with the company for decades. "We have a lot of employees that have been here many years, many that have been here over 25 years, some more than that up to probably 35, 40 years" Sheldon said.
The signature Mepps spinning lure was developed by a French engineer in the 1930s. After it found its way to Todd Sheldon of Antigo, he became a distributor and later purchased the company. Mepps still receives individual lure components made in its original factory in Nice, France.
Today, Mepps remains a family-run business that has kept Antigo on the map as home of "The World's #1 Lure."