I thank God for my friends. Not only are they gorgeous, successful, creative, fun and witty people (who make me look good when out in public together!), but they are well-read and resourceful as well! So, as a side-note, if you cannot say at least five things similarly about your friends, get new friends (but leave mine alone… they’re already spoken for)! Now, back to Mercedes. She is the friend specific to this post as she was the one who told me yesterday about a little scandal (you know I am prone to dramatics!). Indeed. And, in the fashion industry to boot! Get ready yall. Did yall know that brands (like Burberry) burn their surplus stock? No; we’re not talking comparatively to the bag of donations you may put aside for goodwill, but millions of dollars’ worth of unsold and out-of-season inventory that gets burned to prevent it from being too steeply discounted (thus diminishing the brand), thereby allowing it to become too easily accessible to just ‘anybody’… thus diminishing the brand. Did yall know this?! I didn’t. This won’t take long. Let’s address this…
- In as recent as 2015 Habitat for Humanity reported that globally those living in “inadequate shelter” amounted to 1.6 billion. So, just imagine what they are eating. Or not. Or wearing. Or not.
- In the past five years, it is estimated that the value of the surplus Burberry has destroyed – not donated, not contributed, not re-purposed – is more than £90m. To be very clear, more than US$117,994,050.00.
Yes, I understand business. And, I understand branding. But my understanding of and appreciation for either will never circumvent humanity. I find this obscene. Their [Burberry’s] trench coats alone (forget their perfumes, bags or even shoes) could be used to shelter some of the world’s homeless from the wicked elements they are subjected to. That to me is branding! Instead, they burn them in the name of branding. Poof!
You know something, I am glad I have never been a ‘label-whore’. And now that I know what I know (thank you, Mercedes), my aversion has increased. The callousness with which we dismiss accountability toward each other, especially in the support of capitalism, is reprehensible! We must do better! We must force change. And awareness. Remember the hands they (the likes of Burberry) are attempting to prevent their items from falling into by being too discounted are ours. Remember that.
I have a pair of Burberry sneakers. I am looking forward to seeing them on the feet of a homeless person (they were a gift; but in light of this I am certain my actions will be understood and respected ). I will keep you all posted.