Finance & Economics

European country makes product destruction more difficult

The law will prohibit companies the destruction of stock unless it’s unusable


European country makes product destruction more difficult. Source:

According to Ecommerce News, the Cabinet of Germany has launched a draft law aimed to improve waste avoidance and increase recycling. This means that the destruction of products will be more difficult, so retailers will have to find a better way to deal with returns.

Many online retailers are currently destroying their stock to free up some extra space in their warehouses. From now on, the law puts more responsibility on companies. Besides, manufacturers and dealers must clearly document how they handle unsold goods. The companies could also sell or donate these products for a lower price, as an option.

Meanwhile, Zalando, one of the online retailers, claimed to be ready for the new regulation.

Zalando already fully complies with the duty of care for the responsible handling of returns and unsold new goods. The destruction of goods and returns not only lacks any commercial logic but in particular contradicts our understanding of sustainable management
Jan Bartels, Senior Vice President Customer Fulfillment at Zalando

Zalando has a return rate of around 50%, but it claims that almost 97% of its articles are sold again via Zalando Shop, Zalando Lounge or outlet stores, or will be donated.


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