It’s hard to imagine in this day and age that retailers would rather destroy merchandise than discount it or give it to charities.
I was at the Drapers Fashion Summit when Lyle & Scott Managing Director Derrick Campbell said that they were considering destroying their merchandise (over a £1million of sweaters) rather than selling it. The whole audience gasped – especially the discount retailers! I found it quite shocking and brave that Derrick Cambell would openly share his thoughts on this subject and was open to discussion.
Destroying overstock is nothing new. Many retailers would rather destroy merchandise than sell to a discounter. Chanel have long had a policy of not discounting.
The New York Times reported that Cynthia Magnus found some bags full of discounted H&M clothing in Manhattan that had all been slashed. She found golves with the fingers cut off, shoes with slashed soles and puffer coats with the stuffing coming out. She plans to have them mended and give them away. The New York Times also reported that Wal-Mart hoodies, T-shirts and trousers were found in garbage bags the week before Christmas.
H & M has since promised to stop the practice of destroying new, unworn clothing that it could not sell and will donate the garments to charities.