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Amazon destroys returned items and new products

Ecommerce giant Amazon is massively destroying returned items and new products. And through Amazon, external vendors also get rid of their unsold goods. All kinds of products are destroyed in German logistics warehouses on a large scale, such as refrigerators, washing machines, cell phones, mattresses and more.


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This is shown by research from the German television show Frontal21 and magazine Wirtschaftswoche. They have based their conclusion on internal product lists, pictures and statements made by Amazon employees. The German Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety says it’s a huge scandal.

‘Goods worth tens of thousands of euros each days’

The two media companies found out that Amazon got rid of products such as white goods, smartphones, tablets, mattresses and furniture on a large scale. An Amazon employee even told that she has destroyed goods worth tens of thousands of euros each day. Several employees have made it clear that Amazon would not only destroy unusable products, but also get rid of functioning and sometimes even new products.

Amazon, the biggest online retailer of Germany, has responded to the investigation and doesn’t deny the destruction of goods. It says however, that it works hard every day to improve processes to destroy as few products as possible.

‘This is a huge scandal’

Jochen Flasbarth, State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, urges Amazon to clarify the allegations. “This is a huge scandal, because this way we are using up our resources, while there are many problems in the world. I’m convinced that many consumers are shocked by such behavior and won’t accept it”, he says.