Local Clusters in Global Chains: The Causes and Consequences of Export Dynamism in Torreons Blue Jeans Industry

Publication Type: 
Journal Name: 
Volume: 
29
Number: 
11
Page Numbers: 
1885-1903
Month/Season: 
Published On: 
2001

Using a case study of the export-oriented blue jeans industry in Torreon, Mexico, the authors discuss the role of US buyers in promoting full-package apparel production. While the networks associated with this model yield better development outcomes for firms and workers than those typical of the maquila industry, the Torreon cluster is not adequately described as a “high road” industrial district. The global commodity chains framework is used to assess the developmental implications of the apparel industry's growth in Torreon. By emphasizing the relationship between producers and foreign buyers, this approach provides a useful way to bridge the global–local divide in the literature on industrial clusters in developing countries.