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Walmart Destroying Clothing

Updated on January 10, 2010

Walmart, H&M Destroying Clothing In NYC

Well, for all of you who read the news you've probably already heard the disheartening story of Walmart and H&M in New York City who were destroying unsold clothing until a graduate student made the discovery at the H&M back entrance and later discovered the destroyed Walmart items a few doors down. The Walmart spokesperson denied any knowledge of these said activities and H&M promised not to do it any more. Well they shouldn't have been doing it in the first place. And we are not talking about one or two bags but twenty bags were discovered. And who knows how many clothing items have been destroyed over the last few months or years. This is just the first time it has come to light.

All the clothing had been destroyed and been made unwearable by cutting arms off of coats, cutting holes in shoes, cutting the fingers off of gloves, cutting the inside of jackets so that the puffy fiber fill would fall out. There is really no excuse for this kind of irresponsibility. It made me sick to my stomach when I read this because not only are they denying people in need of much needed clothing they are creating an even bigger problem by putting the clothing in the trash. All these trashed items make their way to a landfill which is very bad for the environment. So not only were they being wasteful it appears they care nothing about the environment. I suppose big conglomerates don't believe they have any responsibility towards the environment. What good does it do to preach to the public about better environmental habits and teach the children better ways when large publicly known companies feel they have no responsibility?

My question would be: Just how long has this wasteful activity been going on? And how many other Walmarts are doing the exact same thing? JUst because it was only discovered in this one place doesn't mean it's not going on elsewhere.

One third of the city's population is poor. That means there are many people living in New York City who are not able to buy new coats when they need them and other items. I'm focusing on coats because of the fact right now is one of the worst time of the year for jacket and coats needs. Not only because it's winter but it's turning out to be a very bitterly cold and bad winter.

It's sad and disheartening that a big giant such as Walmart would even engage in such awful, wasteful behavior. Of course they deny any knowledge, they don't want to admit publicy they have been doing this and perhaps this is not the first time but may be the hundredth time. Walmart is without a doubt probably the biggest retail conglomerate in the United States. I would hasten to add if it were not for their loyal customers they would not be the giant they are. They would fallen by the wayside years ago just like all the Mom and Pop stores of yesteryear. They started just like everyone else did at the bottom of the totem pole.

Personally, I think it should be a crime for any store to throw away good, usable merchandise. Thet can either mark the goods down until they sell them and if they mark them down enough they will sell but if they don't sell donate the goods especially clothing items to a charity. Charities are always struggling to meet the demands of our ever increasing poverty stricken population. There is no escuse, they have none.

I'm not a big fan of adding more laws but big businesses shouldn't have to be told to do the right thing. We are all human so we don't all know exactly what we should do and this goes for businesses too but it's common sense not to throw away brand new clothing.

It was childish and irresponsible to destroy the clothing and hopefully by now they understand this and hopefully they won't let it happen again. We can hope anyway.

After talking to someone I know who worked at Target Corporation(Target Stores) I found that this is obviously not an isolated incident but something alot of retailers do. He tells me that when he worked at Target they threw away many items not just clothing but dog food and many other items that could have been marked down or donated. He was told they make more money writing it off which I'm sure they do. I really can't understand why they don't get big enough tax advantage to donate it but I guess they don't because if they did they would donate it.

Nonetheless, good items especially clothing shouldn't just be thrown in the trash when their are alot of needy people out there. It's a pure disgrace and big businesses and corporations should try to remember where they came from and remember it's the customers, the people that keep them going. Without customers there would be no big business.


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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I find the Target story hard to believe. I am an avid thrift store shopper and have been to many many different store chains all over the US and almost all of them are riddled with brand new Target merchandise. Most Goodwills have probably about 1/8 new Target stock that have the tags still on them.

    • sassygrrl32 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

      My husband explained about the tax laws and how they profit more by throwing away. It all has to do with taxing. But I feel the tax laws need to be changed. If it were more advantageous tax wise to donate than throw away they would take that route I'm sure. Unfortunately it's all about money and bottom line and that's sad, it shouldn't be that way.

    • someonewhoknows profile image


      8 years ago from south and west of canada,north of ohio

      It's part of the tax laws that are written that allows retailers to destroy merchandise that they write off as a loss.Of course they wouldn't be able to do that if,the merchandise were in good condition.The truth sometimes hurts.We,all know they did it ,because the taxpayers are footing the loss.Yet,the taxpayers don't even get what they paid for,instead it's destroyed and thrown away,rather than given to the poor or needy to use.This is not charitable.They should have used that merchandise as part of some charity campaign rather than throw it away.If,the tax laws need to be changed ,change them.It ,only makes the retailer and the politicians look bad.


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