- A video investigation has found that Amazon destroys perfectly usable electronics to make space in its warehouses.
- Former Amazon employees have also spoken out about the practice.
- Junked products include brand new iPhones, MacBooks, smart TVs, premium headphones, and more.
An explosive undercover video investigation by ITV News has found that Amazon destroys millions of perfectly good unsold products every year, including brand new laptops, smart TVs, phones, premium headphones, fitness trackers, and more.
The news outlet revealed footage from an Amazon warehouse in the Scottish town of Dunfermline, where countless highly valuable products are shown being marked for destruction before being carried off in huge trucks to landfills and recycling centers.
An ex-Amazon employee told ITV News that the center’s target was to destroy an astonishing 130,000 items each week!
Exclusive: Amazon is destroying millions of items of unsold stock in one of its UK warehouses every year, an ITV News investigation has uncovered.
— ITV News (@itvnews) June 21, 2021
“I used to gasp. There’s no rhyme or reason to what gets destroyed: Dyson fans, Hoovers, the occasional MacBook, and iPad; the other day, 20,000 Covid (face) masks still in their wrappers,” the former Amazon employee said in an interview with ITV News.
The sheer scale of Amazon’s alleged wastefulness has shocked environmentalists and social media users who saw the video. What’s more worrying is that this is just one warehouse of the 175 shipment centers Amazon operates worldwide.
Since the footage was shared, another whistleblower from an Amazon warehouse in Hertfordshire, England, said that “lots of things from brand new iPhones to PlayStations” were destroyed by the company.
As per ITV, Amazon’s country manager for the UK said that the number of items that were destroyed was “very small.”
Amazon also released the following statement on Tuesday.
As a last resort, we will send items to energy recovery, but we’re working hard to drive the number of times this happens down to zero
Unsold inventory often becomes uneconomical as manufacturers find it more expensive to recall the goods than let them stay put in warehouses, ITV reports. However, Amazon may be better off donating these usable products rather than junking them entirely.
Following the investigation, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has promised to look into the allegations, which he deemed “incredible.”