OR clothing company moving sewing back from China

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SALEM, Ore. (AP) -- An Oregon apparel company cites inflation and quality control problems as two of the reasons it's moving its manufacturing out of China and back to the United States.

Nine 1 One Gear of Portland previously had its line of outerwear for firefighters and emergency responders made in China. Now it will rely on skilled workers in Salem.

In what company officials are calling a merger, Nine 1 One Gear is joining WaterShed Inc.

The Statesman Journal reports that WaterShed's and Nine 1 One Gear's brands will be manufactured at WaterShed's 25,000-square-foot Salem plant. Products made by the merger partners will be marketed by a newly formed group called WaterShed Apparel, which employs 50 people.

Nine 1 One President Peter Ettro says that in addition to inflation and quality problems, manufacturing capacity at Chinese apparel plants is tight, and lead times for filling orders are growing longer.

WaterShed CEO Justin Brown says the arrangement offers his company a chance to reach new customers. It makes rain gear for public safety and outdoor workers.

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Information from: Statesman Journal, http://www.statesmanjournal.com