The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has numerous books that are considered the standard curriculum for the Church, there are also a number of other items that Latter-day Saints need that can only be bought from the Church. For this reason, the Church has facilities around the world known as Distribution Centers.
The main Distribution Center is near Church headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah. Most of the items to be distributed are produced in Utah, and then sent to the Distribution Center. The Distribution Center is then responsible for making sure that the items are sent where they are needed. Sometimes, however, Salt Lake City imports materials from the other distribution centers. This often includes curriculum materials in Asian and European languages, which are produced in those areas.
Distribution Centers distribute such things as scriptures, instructional materials produced by the Church, Duty to God pins, DVDs and CDs, pictures, and computer software for genealogical work. They supply garments and temple clothing to members. In some areas of the world, distribution centers stock chairs, carpet, doors, blackboards, and other materials for furnishing Church classrooms and offices. Materials are distributed in more than 150 languages.
All of the items sold at Distribution Centers are sold at cost. Some items found there are even free. The reason is that many members of the Church, especially in developing countries, do not have much money. The Church does not want them to go without the resources they need because they cannot afford them. Operations are not designed to make a profit; they are designed to enable members everywhere to get the resources they need.
The number of items shipped by the Distribution Center in Salt Lake City is staggering. For example, in 1991 they shipped 802,000 orders, ten years later that number rose to 1.7 million.
Distribution Center items can be purchased online at www.ldscatalog.com