E-commerce giant Amazon is to reduce rubbish with two new policies following an ITV News investigation which found the company destroying millions of items of unsold stock.
The largest online retailer came under fire two months ago after ITV released footage of an Amazon warehouse in Dunfermline, Scotland destroyed everything from laptops and TV’s to hairbrushes and books.
Video evidence and interviews by ITV News found 50 per cent of products were returned unopened and lorries full of perfect condition items dumped into waste centres and recycling sites.
In an interview with ITV, ex-amazon employee Raymond Joseph said, workers destroy around 123,000 items each week and ‘had become numb to what they are being asked to do.’
Amazon has now released two new schemes to stop throwing away unused items and give products ‘a second life’, as a response to the criticism it received from environmental campaigners and lawmakers.
The retail giant announced on its blog, the new policies would help businesses on the site reduce waste by reselling returned or surplus items contributing to Amazon’s goal of net zero carbon by 2040.
Amazon’s FBA Grade and Resell initiative was set up for businesses looking to resell returned items as “used” items. The retailer says items will be sent to Amazon for evaluation and then decide the condition of it. Sellers can then set the price of the item based on the condition.
The programme has begun in the UK and it set to start by the end on this year in the US, followed closely with European nations in 2022.
The second programme FBA Liquidations, set to launch later this month in the UK, was set up to allow traders access to the company’s wholesale resale channel and technology to recover part of the commission by reselling returned items and excess stock through bulk sale.
Both policies are part of the company’s Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) programme and aim to ‘build a circular economy and reduce our impact on the planet,’ according to Libby Johnson McKee, director, Amazon WW Returns, ReCommerce and Sustainability.