H&M Outed by NYT for Slash & Trash of Unsold Garments (Update: H&M Concedes)

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by mkrishnan, Jan 9, 2010.

  1. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #1
    EDIT: The update, with H&M's promise to fix this, is in this reply.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/06/nyregion/06about.html

    Maybe the report will cause them to do something more responsible... although I do sort of understand why they might do something like that, as a customer of theirs, I don't approve of it.
     
  2. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #2
    I remember Costco and a few other big box stores getting outed for doing the same thing to seasonal items like garden furniture. Did those practices cease?
     
  3. mkrishnan thread starter Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #3
    Good question... a Walmart contractor is also found to do the same in the NYT piece, and Walmart responded indicating that they have a policy of donating unsold garments, and they promised to investigate why the garments were destroyed.

     
  4. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #4
    There's a notable difference between garden furniture, which I'm going to assume won't keep the poor warm during winter (unless burned), and shoes and puffy jackets which certainly can.
     
  5. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    Absolutely but the point was does outing the company in question lead to a ceasation of the practice. It looks like it just drives it further underground.
     
  6. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    Forcing large companies to do things like send people to developing countries to check on the conditions requires they meet some of the standards. And if it becomes too expensive to just destroy the goods rather than give them away they will probably do the latter.

    It does damage their brand that they don't do the latter already however.
     
  7. mkrishnan thread starter Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #7
    Fashion is fickle, so I have no problem being bitchy to H&M about it. :eek: :D

    EDIT: Looks like there's new news. Apparently the twitterati put H&M in its place.

    http://www.walletpop.com/blog/2010/01/07/unsold-clothes-destroyed-at-h-and-m-until-twitter-roared/

    It is kind of worrisome to me that these companies make these corporate stewardship promises which are apparently routinely ignored by their retail locations (from the original NYT piece, it didn't sound like the dumping at H&M was a one-time occurrence). If this is a violation of a pre-existing policy of theirs, then they should be taking disciplinary action against whomever violated their policy.
     
  8. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    Agreed.

    It is good that H&M have taken this seriously.
     
  9. mkrishnan thread starter Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #9
    They posted this link themselves (it took me a couple tries to figure out that Twitter was mis-parsing the link, though :eek: )... their link offers more specifics about what they're pledging to do.

    http://ow.ly/UukE

    Hmmm, presumably it generates some additional wasted carbon and cost, but it probably makes it pretty likely they'll be following their policy, and perhaps they can use it to help clothes get to those in most need. Hopefully they also continue to support charities in the locales where they operate.
     
  10. Shivetya macrumors 65816

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    #10
    Who assumes liability from donated items?

    Provided that liability issues are handled properly I have nothing against asking companies to donate items that would otherwise be destroyed. However to demand it without providing liability protection is just asking for it.

    My cousins in Ohio run a bakery, they used to provide bread that did not sell that day; certain loaves were allowed more than single day runs; to a local shelter till they got sued. The shelter didn't store the stuff properly and some sticky buns (cinnamon type things) got contaminated and made a few people sick. Well my cousins are the ones whose insurance had to pay up so they stopped giving the stuff away. They sell it to some place that mixes it into animal feed I think
     
  11. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #11
    Let the poor wear your brand name clothes and watch your brand tank. This is smart business.
     
  12. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #12
    Not really, because the stuff that doesn't sell is the crap stuff and by the time the poor get this stuff its last seasons anyhow.
     
  13. remmy macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    Or get the brand dragged through the mud in the news over wasting clothes which could be useful.
     
  14. mkrishnan thread starter Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #14
    I do have to actually say, one thing that impresses me about the rapid turnover at H&M and similar stores is that, while I know a number of people who wear their clothes (and see many more on the street), it's not often that someone is walking by in the same clothes as me.
     
  15. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #15
    I don't understand how anyone can agree with H&M's practices. Maybe I am confused but it seems silly to toss perfectly useable clothes while people freeze or have nothing more than the clothes on their back.
     
  16. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    #16
    Agreed, this definitely seems wrong to me.
     
  17. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #17
    Its called managing your brand, it happens all the time, it just sucks when the media latches on to it.

    If caddy started giving away surplus cars to homeless people no rich people would want to buy them.
     
  18. mkrishnan thread starter Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #18
    I'm not sure you understand fashion customers very well... not many of us think this way (in any event, not about clothes). Management of the brand has to do with the kind of customers it attracts. H&M attracts mostly customers who don't care for this sort of behavior.
     
  19. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #19
    There would be no reason for them to implement the practices they are then. If I wanted to sell my clothes for anything more than walmart prices I would not be handing them out to homeless.
     
  20. remmy macrumors 6502a

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    #20
    Caddy is a upper half of the market brand, with a badge on the front. H&M is a middle of the road brand. Managing your brand is more than sticking a nice logo on a product.

    Why would you rather not have the free media try and challenge large companies more debatable practises?
     
  21. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #21
    Why bother when 99% will forget about it tomorrow as opposed to being known as hobo wear forever.
     
  22. remmy macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    Wrong way around, why be remembered forever as tight fisted scrooges. Remembered as hobo wear!? lol, its hardly like the poor homeless are forced to wear H&M uniforms.

    Even though I have H&M clothes its not like I would notice someone else as wearing something from the same shop.

    In the end destroying the clothes is a waste of resources when there are people who need them.
     
  23. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #23
    I really don't think there's much liability involved in clothing donated from a store. If you kill yourself with a T shirt, you're either an abject imbecile, or should have had some sort of supervision anyway.
     
  24. 184550 Guest

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    #24
    Exactly. I'm sure that there is one person out there who would get an item of clothing and be allergic to the fibers or something and then sue H&M.

    I'm assuming that H&M is a privately owned company and has every right to do as they see fit with their extra stock. Sure, it's nice to donate it to those who need it, but not required and thus shouldn't be expected.
     
  25. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #25
    Don't they have the fibres listed on the washing label?
     

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