Thursday, July 19, 2018

Burberry Burns its Clothing

Photo by Salt Water New England
From The Guardian:
Luxury brand burns clothing and beauty items in practice said to be widespread in retail. 
https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2018/jul/19/burberry-destroys-28m-stock-guard-against-counterfeits

30 comments:

  1. A veritable Götterdämmerung for capitalism. Use quasi-slave labor in China to produce 'intellectual-property' protected 'luxury' clothing and then destroy tens of millions of dollars worth of clothing whilst billions of our fellow humans live in poverty without proper clothing. The 19th century English philosopher Carlyle said of we humans "Not what I have, but what I do, is my kingdom." What is your kingdom?

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    1. Not to mention the big middle finger given to the environment.

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    2. Perhaps they should just open some Factory Outlet Stores as others have done (BB, Ralph Lauren, etc.)

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    3. Most of the merchandise in PRL outlet stores is made specifically for them. In my experience, the quality is inferior. Very few Brits seem to shop in Burberry's London store. The customers seem to be tourists, ironically from the Asian countries where the factories are located.

      As for capitalism, it's not perfect but it's better than socialism. The last century shows that socialism (whether nationalist/Nazi, Marxist or Maoist) inevitably results in totalitarian police states, concentration camps and genocide. China is still run by the Communist Party which exerts total control over its people and businesses. So it's really a fascist, not a capitalist, state.

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    4. They used to have 3 factory outlets within a 30 mile radius of where I live in Yorkshire, but then they rebranded again as a 'luxury' brand and decided they should no longer offer reduced price clothing to the general public as it cheapened their brand. So instead, they burn it. What a monstrous waste.

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  2. It seems that criticism of the “quasi-slave labor” of capitalism is valid if you fail to grasp the concept of reality, which upon closer inspection reveals that “quasi-slave labor” employs hundreds of thousands in China who would, otherwise, remain unemployed and lack an ability to provide.

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    1. Your classic justification for low wages is the essence of 19th century liberalism - pay the masses something to let them survive, semi-educate their children, allow low-priced beer and liquor to pervade their neighborhoods and all is well. We have not evolved much.

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  3. Burberrys not the only brand to do this - as the article mentions, most fashion houses do same with their pret-a-porter inventory surplus. Samples are spared the bonfire; these are happily given away to models, stylists, fashion magazine editors and their assistants. A million years ago I interned at Harpers; I was not a size 0 and but a huge size 6. I got tons of loot, but only a few items of clothing that I could wear (as long as I didn't exhale).

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  4. I'm assuming that this has something to do with not "cheapening the brand" in some way, but.....

    doesn't this action end up communicating that the product itself was so cheap at wholesale that their retail prices are ABSURDLY too high?

    NCJack

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    1. I remember hearing a story of this ilk years ago from a tour guide who was showing us around Berlin. His uncle worked for one of the disposal companies which took refuse from high end European luxury brands and burned it for them. Our guide recalled receiving many Lacoste shirts from his uncle for each birthday and holiday. He would pull them off the platform before their reaching the incinerator, and then sneak them out for family members and friends - of course, strictly against the company's policy.

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    2. I wish that gentleman was my uncle. I have enjoyed wearing Lacoste shirts over the years, but have found them to normally be at too high a "price point."

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  5. I was also reading that a few watch companies have bought back stock , but I can't believe they'd trash millions of dollars of chronometers ............

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    1. They recycle the movements and other valuable parts.

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  6. What's a cirquitor? Google has it as something to do with electrical circuits?

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  7. So, after reading this article and post I went to my closet and pulled out my Burberry items. These included: a top coat, three scarves, a cap, and a light-weight jacket.

    I then went out to the backyard and built a fire using charcoal, sticks, and the highly flammable gasoline. It was roaring in a matter of moments.

    I threw my Burberry clothing onto the fire and as it burned, chanted, "Burn, Burberry, burn!"

    The flames got really high and several neighbors came over to see what all the ruckus and flames were about. I told them about this post. They couldn't believe it. They went home, got their Burberries, and put them on the fire. Then we held hands and chanted "Burn Burberry, burn!" It was a great night.

    Does this sound totally stupid and irrational? Yeah, that's what I thought about Burberry burning their product.

    Aiken

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    1. Made me laugh, Aiken. Thanks for that! :)

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    2. Glad you got a chuckle. It's Friday afternoon, after all.

      Aiken

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    3. Ah, the traditional Friday afternoon Burburning!

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  8. Burberry is impractical for my lifestyle. I prefer something more durable at a more reasonable price point. Also, I don't feel the need to broadcast my personal economics via the pattern on my hat, coat, scarf, etc.

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  9. I find it bit funny that in this day of nobody having enough time and all the attempts being made to shorten words and phrases in our communications and up pops "price point" in everyday conversation. What ever happened to "price"?

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    1. Street price vs rrp/mrrp ........... get with it now .. LOL

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  10. A Cirquitor is a watchman (or should I now say watchperson). The name is taken from the Latin word for circuit. In the Middle Ages, many villages and abbeys would appoint a Circuitor not only to keep watch, but also to punish those found to have transgressed, without trial or other scrutiny.

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  11. I really don't understand this....

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  12. Susan, you were never meant to understand this. It's ok.

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    1. Good because burning clothes seems like such a waste to me, whatever the reason. People somewhere could have used them, but they had to be burned for the vanity of a company? Nope, don't get it.

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  13. I've seen some of the Burberry clothing in magazine ads. They were so incredibly ugly that I'd burn them too.

    Whimmy

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  14. Does no one here realize that phrases and expressions like "lifestyle," "price point," "aspirational," etc. are all ADVERTISING INDUSTRY words? In a nutshell, marketeers create a "want!" factor that actually has little or nothing to do with the quality or function of the actual goods produced. They are selling, famously, the sizzle not the steak. You are being sold a "look" that you've been trained (like a seal!) to believe connotes a certain level of socioeconomic attainment,
    and that wearing their brand will get you some kind of admiration or positive notice you have also been taught to seek, disregarding the fact that any putz with a middling Visa card can today dress like a head of state if they so choose.

    I don't see tons of cosmopolitan sophistication among superficial minds so easily manipulated by contrived, manufactured Pavolovian suggestion. Slaves to fashion, maybe! Pfffttt! ;-)

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  15. My grandmother has that exact coat. She told me that in Britain when she was young (1940s) she and most of her friends had Burberry (then Burberrys, as she still calls the brand) rain coats and even the ones who didn't have actual Burberry coats still referred to the garment as a 'Burberry' coat, akin to 'Kleenex' for tissue.

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