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Consumers' Union


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(established 1936)

The Consumers' Union (CU) was founded in New York as a pressure group for educated consumers at a time when the USA was experiencing the rapid transformation of everyday life by an ever‐increasing and bewildering range of appliances and consumer goods. The CU sought to provide consumer advice and to test products objectively, communicating its findings in its periodical Consumer Union Reports (later Consumer Reports). Between 1945 and 1950 the magazine's circulation rose from 50,000 to 500,000, continuing to rise over the next twenty years to 1,800,000 (with a far greater readership). However, like its British counterpart the Consumers' Association, it was mainly supported by educated professionals who were among the more discriminating and knowledgeable consumers.

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.


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