Earlier this month, OshKosh B’gosh at Dufferin Mall made headlines by destroying oodles of unsold clothes and tossing ’em out back.
OshKosh B’gosh got caught, but it’s far from the only retailer throwing out perfectly fine wares. It’s a practice that runs through every industry – fashion, food, tech.
But there is hope. On Thursday, France passed a groundbreaking law that bans designer clothes and luxury goods companies from destroying unsold or returned items. That includes cosmetics, electrical items, and hygiene products. Oh, and food. Effective immediately, any supermarket that refuses to donate food can be fined €10,000.
Under the new rules, companies will be forced to reuse, redistribute, or recycle everything that isn’t sold. Furthermore, companies will be required to finance the destruction of waste that they create. An awesome example of this clause in action includes tobacco companies being responsible for disposing of cigarette butts.
Most accurately translated as the “anti-waste law,” the goal is to create a circular economy. That means eliminating all waste and pollution where possible in the entire lifecycle of a product.
France destroys €650m worth of new consumer products every year, according to French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe.