The annoying “vuvuzela” horns at the 2010 South Africa World Cup are all made in China


(photo by Xihua reporter 杨磊)

(From Currently the hottest news topic around the world is probably the World Cup. Other than the excellent performances by the teams of various countries, the most talked about subject is perhaps the loud horn noise that fills up the entire stadium from the beginning to the end of each match. These long plastic horns called vuvuzela are causing heated discussions internationally because of the high decibel noises they make.

Although the Chinese team did not make it to the World Cup, perhaps Chinese people can feel satisfied to know that 90% of the globally resounding horns are made in China. Other than the horns, many other products related to football at the World Cup are all made in China.

It is said that the horn “vuvuzela” can produce noise up to 127 decibels. With the entire stadium filled with these horn noises, it is even louder than the noise produced by a jet engine during takeoff and landing. Many fans watching the games live on television at home often mistake the noise for mosquitoes (or flies) flying next to their ears.

According to the locals, South Africans use vuvuzela to shoo away baboons, it is able to stun the fierce beasts. While the local people are proud of these horns, they are driving many fans and athletes who are not used to the loud noise crazy. Some even requested the officials to ban the use of vuvuzela.

However this controversial little plastic horn fulfilled many Chinese companies that are thousands of miles away. Most of the vuvuzela are made in Zhejiang and Guangdong of China.

“You could say that 90% of the vuvuzela during the entire South Africa World Cup are made in China. Including the horns used during the opening ceremony are all made by us.” Zhejiang Ninghai Ji Ying Plastic Products Factory manager Wu Yijun told the “Daily Economic News” reporter yesterday (June 16).

Wu Yijun said, since the beginning of this year to April, the factory already produced over 1 million horns. All manufacturers (produce the horn) are concentrated in Ninbo, Zhejiang province and Shantou, Guangdong province. Not many of them, about 4 to 5 or so.

Sales manager of Guangda toy factory in Guangdong, Lin Miaoyun is also kept busy by the production and sales of these horns for the World Cup. According to her, the factory produces 20 different models of the horns sold in Netherland, South Africa, Brazil, South Korea and other countries.

Lin Miaoyun in a interview with “Daily Economic News” yesterday said, “We have already produced these products for sports fans several years ago, with limited models and also small amount of them. We did not expect them to do so well in the World Cup in South Africa. The high demand already showed on the orders since last September. We have been busy since last November to March of this year. Now we only accept payment first then start production. A lot of money were sent over to us, we had no choice but to work overtime to increase production, or else there will be not enough products for the customers.”

The sales were so hot Lin Miaoyun even had no time to calculate the sales statistics data. She told the reporter that lately they have been busy in production, as for the specific sales data she has not had time to calculate.

Clearly, the market with demands exceeding supply attracted countless businesses to make a move. “Many manufactories never produced horns before and also are not professional horn makers. Now that the market is so hot, many small manufactures made the transition to produce products for the sports fans once they smell the World Cup.”

According to Wu Yijun, this year’s market will greatly increase manufactures’ profit. “The production output value of our factory last year was only 18 million yuan. Because of the World Cup this year’s production output value will have a more than 50% increase, to around 28 million yuan.” The entire South Africa market is huge, “ the estimate of entire horn market is more than 20 million USD”.

Actually, it is not just vuvuzela, in the World Cup in South Africa, products made in China can be found everywhere. Mobile phone chains, key chains, footballs, wigs, national flags, light sticks, hats… However most of these products “Made in China” cannot make (Chinese) people proud.

Lin Miaoyun said during the interview with “Daily Economic News”, “The horns at the South Africa World Cup have different styles and different prices as well. We make them according to the customers’ needs. The longest is up to 67 cm and the shortest 7.3 cm, the factory price is around 0.6 – 2.5 yuan each.”

During the World Cup in South Africa, the price of the horn is from 20 rand (about 17.7 yuan or 2.5 dollars) to 60 rand (about 53.1 yuan 7.8 dollars). The profit margin of the Chinese factory is actually less 5%. Obviously, the vast majority of the profit went to the pockets of foreign distributors and importers. Facing the huge World Cup business opportune market, “Made in China” often only harvest a little petty profits.

However, some Chinese businessmen have their heads clear. “ We have to cut production ahead of schedule, it needs 35 days for products to ship to South Africa, at that time the event will be over and also air shipping cost too much.” Wu Yijun said.

“The end of World Cup will impact our sales; we can only look for other opportunities.” Wu Yijun said, they have already shifted the direction to domestic market, now began to capture the business opportunities in the Asian Games in Guangzhou.”


    1. Well , you are welcome. The annoying vuvuzel horns made in china , not noise.
      Doggone noise ~!!!!!

  1. It seems everything is made in China. 🙂

    I currently live abroad. And today I went to buy some baby clothes for my elder cousin who recently gave a birth to son.
    I know she would be happy to get some fancy clothes from abroad. In one shop when I chose few that I liked, I asked the seller: “They are not from China, right?”
    And she said: “Of course they ARE from China! Everything is from China. Our designers make the design, but the colthes themselves are produced in China”.

    1. When I lived in the States, I was amused at Chinese people’s disappointment when they would come to America and go shopping. They were really hoping to purchased products that are actually made in America, but alas. I would try to tell that “Made in China for American distribution” isn’t the same as “Made in China for Chinese distribution” but that did little to ease their mind. There are countless luxury brands and high-quality products made in China under foreign brand names, but to most Chinese people, “Made in China” means “cheap” regardless.

    2. I don’t know about clothes though. Went to a local Wal-mart a few months back and saw clothes are made in Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, India, Egypt, but not alot coming from China.

  2. LOL, every time I hear people talk about boycotting Chinese products I just laugh.

    First of all, it’s the foreign companies that are producing those Chinese products you are all boycotting. Walmarts, Nikes, etc. So if you don’t like that, tell it to them to leave the Chinese market.

    Second, if you for some demented reason think that all Chinese produced goods are gifts from Satan… just stop buying them, what’s the point of going redfaced and overwork your vocal cords about it. It won’t help your cause, and it won’t help you.

    Seriously, if everything “made in China” are uber toxic and randomly explodes for no reasons… somehow.. there wouldnt be any made in China goods in stores now. The fact that the vast majority of them only reflects the market demands.

    So these boycotters, you failed.

  3. Quit whining about products being made in China. If it wasn’t for these cheap products you wouldn’t be able to experience the hedionistic western lifestyle.

  4. don’t blame the messenger, or in this case, the manufacturer. somebody in another country ordered these horns.

  5. I dont know why everyone hates the vuvuzelas so much, they are simply a part of the experience of many football fans in south africa, and I for one am happy to encourage the sale of them on my blog.

  6. Seat and relax!!! just count how many things in your house are locally made. I guess maybe less than 5% .. and if you were to remove one by one .. you’re living in an empty house .. even your underwear is made in China. I’m living in Australia … well done China !!!

  7. Everything is made in China. How about challenging yourself never use,wear, and etc. Made in China products for a week? haha! It will be very difficult!

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