Can you find spatulas, turners, spoons not made in China?
There are certain things that I go out of my way to look for that aren’t made in China. Top of the list is food. Anything I ingest or, more importantly, that my child ingests is NOT coming from the world’s top polluter.
A close second on the list is anything to do with cooking. Remember in 2004 when people ingested dangerous chemicals from CrockPots that were made in China? Of course you don’t, because that news was covered up as efficiently as when Tankman was whisked out of Tienanmen Square and never seen again, both by the Chinese government and by corporate executives that desperately wanted to protect the gravy train that went through Beijing.
Kitchen utensils are the epitome of all that went wrong when the United States granted MFN to China. Search for “spatula” on Amazon and all you see are fake China brands dumping their products on Americans. In order to stay competitive, once-great American kitchen brands like KitchenAid, Cuisinart, All Clad, and OXO poured all of their manufacturing into China.
Can you even find spatulas, turners, spoons not made in China?
The good news is that you can. The bad news is that it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack.
Any mass-produced American brand is long gone. I used OXO for most of my life, but after they moved all their manufacturing to China their quality plummeted. There was literally no difference between buying them and a cheap China-made product, except for those three letters on the handle. Most Americans eventually conclude that it’s not worth paying double the price just to have three letters.
If you’re lucky enough to live by an Asian supermarket run by Japanese, Taiwanese or South Koreans, you may be in luck. A lot of these stores will import goods not from big American brands, but from local manufacturers in their respective countries.
On a recent trip to my local H-Mart, I saw the spatula you see here (made in Japan), the steel spatula (made in Korea) and the spoon (made in Japan). The price was incredibly low, the quality better than anything I could get on Amazon.
I scanned the UPC codes and looked for them on Amazon, but couldn’t find them. Why? Because Amazon has stacked the deck in favor of China. In addition to their cheating, China manufacturers simply flood the marketplace with mass produced junk and dominate the listings, leaving no room for an independent brand out of Japan or Korea to get any visibility.
The good news is that some third party sellers are “breaking through”. Unfortunately, Amazon’s search doesn’t work (and I believe it’s intentional). If you search “kitchen utensils not made in china” or “kitchen utensils made in Japan”, you’ll invariably get a page full of China junk. But I went through and found some options.
- Westmark Kitchen Utensil Set – Made in Germany
- Seki Kitchen Tool Set – Made in Japan
- Nagao Tsubamesanjo Kitchen Tool Set – Made in Japan
- SiliPot Cooking Utensils Set – Made in South Korea
- Matfer Bourgeat Exoglass Plain Pelton Spatula – Made in France
- Mercer Culinary Hell’s Handle Turner / Spatula – Made in Taiwan
- Rada Cutlery Premium Nylon Turner and Flipper – Made in USA
- Epicurean Medium Turner – Made in USA
- Westmark Heavy Duty Turner – Made in Germany
- Seki Nylon Spatula – Made in Japan
- Debra’s Kitchen Slotted Turner Spatula – Made in USA
- CookKing Premium Silicone Spatula Turner – Made in South Korea
- Westmark Gallant Plus Vegetable / Wok Spoon – Made in Germany
- Epicurean Large Spoon – Made in USA
- Rada Basting Spoon – Made in USA
- Sori Yanagi Serving Spoon – Made in Japan
- Seki Japan Nylon Cooking Spoon – Made in Japan
- Wahei Freiz Ladle – Made in Japan
- Edison Friends Silicon Ladle – Made in Korea
- Handmade Wooden Spoon by Amish Craftsmen – Made in USA
- Tiger Crown Measuring Spoons – Made in Japan
- American Metalcraft Stainless Steel Measuring Spoons – Made in India
- Liberty Tabletop Visual Measuring Spoons – Made in USA
- Nordic Ware Sea Glass Spoons – Made in USA
- Wanda Living Measuring Cups and Spoons – Made in India
- Parukinzoku Measuring Spoons – Made in Japan
- Vollrath 12-Inch Scalloped Utility Tongs – Made in USA
- Rada 9-Inch Heavy-Duty Tongs – Made in USA
- Kokubo Serving Tong – Made in Japan
- Nagao Tsubame All Purpose Cooking Tongs – Made in Japan
- Pizazza Tongs – Made in Italy
- Seki Nylon Food Tong – Made in Japan
- Oaks Lele Yubisaki Tongs – Made in Japan
- Heirloom Living Silicone Spatulas – Made in the USA. If OOS on Amazon, check their site.
- Tiger Crown Spatula – Made in Japan
- Epicurean Silicone Large Spatula – Made in USA
- Matfer Bourgeat Exoglass Higher Temperature Pelton Slotted Spatula – Made in France
- Mercer Culinary Large Fish Turner / Spatula – Made in Taiwan
- Seki Japan Kitchen Stainless Steel Spatula – Made in Japan
- Seki Japan Kitchen Nylon Spatula – Made in Japan
- Westmark Germany Non-Stick Thermoplastic Spatula – Made in Germany
8. Cook’s Fork
- Mercer Culinary Cook’s Fork – Made in Taiwan
- Mercer Culinary Ultimate White 8″ Fork – Made in Taiwan
- Shun Cutlery Two-Pronged Fork – Made in Japan
9. Pizza Cutter
- Mercer Culinary Millenia Pizza Cutter – Made in Taiwan
- Westmark Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Pizza Cutter Wheel – Made in Germany
- Kuhn Rikon Original Peeler Set 3-Pack – Made in Switzerland
- Kuhn Rikon Swiss Metal Peeler – Made in Switzerland
- Mercer Culinary Y Swiss Peeler – Made in Taiwan
- Westmark Ceramic Blade – Made in Germany
- Westmark Germany Non-Stick Thermoplastic Skimmer – Made in Germany
- Wahei Freiz Scrubber / Skimmer – Made in Japan
- Nagao Scrubber / Skimmer – Made in Japan
- Westmark Germany Non-Stick Thermoplastic Spaghetti Server – Made in Germany
- Epicurean Pasta Server – Made in USA
- Suncraft Nylon Pasta Tongs – Made in Japan
- Seki Nylon Pasta Tongs – Made in Japan
- Liberty Tabletop Stainless Handle Whisks – Made in USA
- Mafter Bourgeat Piano Whisk – Made in France
- Nagao Tsubamesanjo Whisk – Made in Japan
14. Ice Cream Scoops
- Westmark Germany Heavy Duty Ice Cream Scoop – Made in Germany
- Piazza Stainless Steel Multipurpose Ice Cream Scoop – Made in Italy
- Tsubame-Sanjo Warming Gelato and Ice Cream Spoon – Made in Japan
15. Can Opener
- Westmark Can Opener – Made in Germany
- Nogent Super Kim Safety Can Opener – Made in France
- Shinkosha Can Opener – Made in Japan
- EZ-DUZ-IT Deluxe Can Opener – Made in USA
- Seki Hand Held Manual Can Opener – Made in Japan
- Pearl Metal Gear Type Can Opener – Made in Japan
Did I miss any kitchen gadget you’re interested in, or did I miss one of your favorite non-China brands? Let me know in the comments!