Manufacturing is a branch of industry which accounts for about one-quarter of the world’s economic activity. It is the application of tools and a processing medium to the transformation of raw materials into finished goods for sale.
Manufacturing includes all intermediate processes required for the production and integration of a product’s components. Some industries, such as semiconductor and steel manufacturers use the term fabrication instead.
The geographical concentration of the manufacturing industry is changing. The industrial capacity of many of the world’s wealthier nations is shrinking, accompanied by a corresponding loss of jobs, due to the relocation of enterprises to lower-wage countries.
Manufacturing objectives incorporate such things as cost, quality, delivery and flexibility and usually there are trade-offs between them. Trade-off decisions are also necessities in a number of key areas enabling patronage of the manufacturing objectives.
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