I sense this too, I believe they'll start making jeans in China eventually and eventually OE denim. Polo jeans come from China, Black Label from Tunisia or Turkey. Most of their bottoms are made in China that were once made in the USA. People don't want to pay $400 for a pair of RRL jeans and at 40-50% off they don't make enough profit. It's almost inevitable this will happen, once the label becomes more mainstream.
The raw/rinse jeans might stay based in the USA but made entirely of White Oak denims. They will probably release "limited edition" jeans that are made in the USA and of Japanese selvedge. Price will probably be somewhere in the $500-600 range and made in small batches of 50-100. Just my theories.
PRPS also switched production of jeans from Japan to China if that's indicative of anything. Their washes are still as good as anything I've ever seen so there is high hopes RRL's China made washes will still look great.
Completely agree. They've already proven with other labels and with RRL tops that they can move production to new countries and be successful. And I don't think quality will suffer in terms of workmanship.
I just really like the feel of the Japanese denim. Also, for me, the RRL denim hits a nice sweet spot between fashionable but not too trendy/hardcore/crazy and not old/staid. I don't care about the Sugurcane/Flathead/Samurai/whatever else hardcore jean comparisons, and I also don't want a pair of Diesels. These strike a really nice balance.
Basically, I just don't want them to change, because I like them as they are.