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TGA News Briefs

The 2021 Travel Goods Show Has Been Cancelled

Like all first-quarter shows, over the last few months we have been evaluating the wisdom of having our 2021 Show, scheduled for Feb. 28-March 2, 2021 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Our primary concern has always been what’s best for the health and safety of our staff, our exhibitors and our attendees.

We have been advised by the Las Vegas Convention Center that all large first-quarter shows in Las Vegas have or will soon be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While we briefly considered moving our Show to August 2021, in a survey our industry overwhelmingly responded that they prefer a first-quarter show. With that in mind, please know that while we don’t have dates to share with you at this time, we will come together again in March 2022 when we’re safely on the other side of this crisis.

Heads Up – The Travel Goods HUB is Coming

We have been working hard to develop a lively, engaging online platform which will maintain and enrich industry relationships throughout the calendar year. To that end, in March 2021, TGA will launch the Travel Goods HUB, a new way for retailers to stay informed and manufacturers to introduce new products. All manufacturing members will receive a free HUB marketplace page listing contact and brand info, with content-rich premium options available. Travel goods retailers, consumers and the media will be able to look up company information, browse 360-degree photos and videos of travel gear, and search keywords, product categories and trademarks, all from the comfort and security of their home or office. And they’ll receive real-time updates whenever travel goods manufacturers introduce new products. You can expect to hear much more about the HUB the first week of January.

Stay Up to Speed with Showcase

Earlier this year, Travel Goods Showcase underwent a complete transformation. Our quarterly magazine – traditionally paper and printed once a quarter – is now paper-free and live online. The benefits of a digital magazine abound, and our readership has excitedly adopted the new, interactive format. Now that the Showcase editorial team has shifted gears to paperless publication, we realize we have a significant opportunity – to nimbly add content to our website on a more regular basis. This is where you – our readers – come in. We encourage you to share your company and product announcements with us. Were you recently featured in the news? Did you roll out a new product line? Are you hiring or searching for distribution partners? Tell us about it and increase awareness of your brand.

As we increase the frequency of our posts, we encourage you to add Showcase to your reading list and sign-up for the subscriber newsletter to stay up-to-date with industry news. Travel Goods Showcase strives to keep the pulse of the travel goods industry, and we are eager to deliver what you need to know, when you need to know it. With questions, please contact Showcase digital manager Kim Wong.

Let Us Shout Your News from the Rooftops

Free benefits abound for TGA members, one of which is our media relations program. Share new product information to be included in timely media outreach, and company news which you’d like to see on the TGA website and social media channels. Don’t forget to tag us in your own social posts as well! TGA continues to work hard to advocate for you, our members. Capitalize on these free member benefits! Please direct questions, new product details and content to TGA’s PR rep Kate Ryan at kate@kateryanpr.com or 774-929-5223.

New TGA Members

A hearty welcome to the following companies:

M=Manufacturer; R=Retail

CAPITAL BEAT

A New Year…A New Hope

By Nate Herman

As we begin 2021, we say goodbye to a year that will likely go down in history as one of the worst for the industry – worse than 9/11 and worse than the 2008-2009 financial crisis.

Yet, we begin this year with a new hope. Two vaccines, and counting, are helping us see the light at the end of the tunnel. And, after eight long months of inaction, Congress finally approved a COVID relief package to help us get to the end of that tunnel, with an extension of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and critical support for our customers, hardworking American families.

Obviously, we are not out of the woods yet. We begin this year facing some of the same challenges as last year, in the form of new lockdowns and new travel restrictions.

And we start the year facing new challenges. While Congress gives with one hand, they take with another, failing to renew the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program before they left for the holidays. Under GSP, U.S. travel goods imports from developing countries such as Thailand, Cambodia, Burma (Myanmar), Indonesia, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, and Pakistan enter the U.S. duty-free. U.S. travel goods imports from GSP countries now account for 15.3% of all U.S. travel goods imports. As a result of Congress’ inaction, GSP expires December 31, 2020, amounting to a huge tax increase on the industry at a time when we can least afford it. TGA is working hard to get the new Congress to retroactively renew GSP as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, the industry still faces 25% punitive tariffs on U.S. travel goods imports from China and the threat of 25% punitive tariffs on U.S. travel goods imports from Vietnam. But, while it may take time, the new Biden administration will likely take a different approach to trade, one that recognizes the importance of trade to the U.S. travel goods industry and our almost 100,000 American workers.

I know today appears bleak but, if we stay on target, we can have a new hope for a better tomorrow. And TGA will be here to help you every step of the way.

For more information, please contact TGA’s Nate Herman at nate@travel-goods.org or 202-853-9351.

CALIFORNIA PROP 65

U.S. Travel Goods Industry Faces More California Prop 65 Notices; TGA Prop 65 Best Practices Guidance

Over the last few months, dozens of new California Proposition 65 (Prop 65) “60-day” notices have been issued alleging that brands and retailers sold luggage, totes, backpacks, briefcases, duffel bags, luggage tags, crossbody bags, passport/ID/card holders, handbags, wallets, cosmetic/toiletry bags, travel/garment cases/carry bags, phone/tablet cases/holders/sleeves/dry bags, fanny packs, and travel bottles/kits in California that contained di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), Bisphenol A (BPA), and/or diisononyl phthalate (DINP) in violation of a California law known as Proposition 65 (Prop 65). The notices serve as intent to bring lawsuits against those companies that made and sold these products. Check out TGA’s member-only California Proposition 65 (Prop 65) Best Practices Guidance on the Prop 65 page on the TGA website at travel-goods.org. This member-only guidance details best practices in developing your company’s Prop 65 testing and warning label protocol, including recommendations on which warning label text to use, where to place the warning label text, and how to test for Prop 65 listed chemicals in your products. For more information on Prop 65, please contact TGA’s Nate Herman, nate@travel-goods.org, 202-853-9351.

A World of Good — Kind Works in the Industry

Irv’s Luggage Supports Women in Crisis

Irv's Luggage support Luggage for Freedom
Irv’s Luggage hosts a packing event in support of Luggage for Freedom.
Luggage for Freedom is a program that strives to give dignity to women who are transitioning out of a domestic violence or homeless situation and residing in a shelter. Partnered with Irv’s Luggage, located in Vernon Hills, IL, gently used luggage is packed with brand new bed linens, towels and personal items collected and donated for the shelters. An antique trunk, labeled “Luggage for Freedom Donations”, sits just inside the front door of Irv’s Luggage so that customers and friends can easily drop off items. Every October, which corresponds to Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Irv’s has a packing event where they gather all the donated luggage, towels, sheets, toiletries and backpacks (collected for kids), and pack each suitcase with sheets, towels and toiletries; the backpacks are filled with books and stuffed animals. The filled luggage and backpacks are then divided into groups to be delivered to pre-arranged shelters. Noting that this has been a brutally tough season for travel businesses and all of the supporting industries, Irv’s Luggage feels blessed to be in a situation where they can still help others and reside in a community that supports their charitable efforts.

Gruv Gear Donates Over $23,000 of Gear to El Dorado High School

Gruv Gear DIA
Gruv Gear donated nearly 150 GigBlade and GigBlade Silver guitar bags to the El Dorado High School Music Program.

This Christmas, Gruv Gear has donated over $23,000 worth of its popular GigBlade guitar bags to the El Dorado High School in Placentia, CA, to support its music department’s holiday fundraisers. The donation comes during a year when COVID-19 restrictions have severely affected the ability of school’s music department to deliver their usual program of events, field shows, marching bands, live performances and more. The gift of nearly 150 GigBlade and GigBlade Silver guitar bags has been a huge boost to the music department’s fund-raising campaign as more than a dozen guitar bags were sold in the first day! The money raised will be used to improve the music departments facilities ensuring students are engaged at all times, even when studying remotely.

MEMBER PROFILES

In an effort to publicize and promote the travel goods industry, TGA profiles both new and long-standing members in every issue of Travel Goods Showcase and on TGA’s website. TGA members can submit profile information by visiting travel-goods.org.

Meade Ray International

Meade Ray InternationalFounded in Montreal, Canada in 1952, CBM Inc. – together with its sister company – Meade Ray International, has built a strong reputation as a leading importer and distributor of small leather goods and accessories. Under its original ownership and with over 60 years of experience in manufacturing and material sourcing, the Meade Ray Int’l team works together with its retailers’ buyers and brand managers to provide premium products in line with current trends and the mainstream market.

“We maintain a constant focus on our buyers’ feedback to help create customized products geared towards their individual needs,” states Anastasia Tsotroudis, “and our experienced team consistently delivers quality designs and pricing, in line with our legacy of exceptional products and service.”

Over the years, Meade Ray’s products have expanded from small leather goods and travel accessories to handbags, luggage, backpacks, belts, cold weather accessories – and in these unprecedented times, masks.

For more information, visit meaderay.com or contact Anastasia Tsotroudis at anastasia@meaderay.com; 514-738-5858.

Ms. Jetsetter

Ms. JetsetterMs. Jetsetter creates organizing solutions for women on the go! The Ms. J brand was born out of Tracey McGhee’s love of travel and a gap she uncovered in the travel accessory space for women. During countless trips, she struggled to find travel accessories that met all of her needs. She was looking for a combination of style, quality, and functionality that addressed specific challenges.

“When I packed my necklaces, I’d find a tangled mess when I arrived at my final destination requiring hours of untangling,” states Tracey. “Similarly, since my makeup and makeup brushes were packed in separate cases, they were not easily accessible for a quick touchup.”

Such travel frustrations inspired the Ms. J line of travel accessories, which includes the Ms. J Travel Trio, a jewelry case that promises no tangled necklaces; a Makeup Case that includes travel-sized makeup brushes; and a Toiletry Bag with a detachable toiletry pouch, making it easy to carry toiletries while on the go. The Ms. J Wristlet and Mask Set is also on the horizon.

For more information, visit msjetsetter.com or contact Tracey McGhee at tracey@msjetsetter.com; 708-945-3816.

Learn more about Travel Goods Association members at travel-goods.org.

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