Burberry burns outfits worth 28 million pounds annually

Burberry burned £28 million worth of clothes deliberately

Luxury fashion brand Burberry has come under fire after it was revealed it burnt £28.6 million ($55.2 million) of stock previous year, instead of selling it at a lower price.

The luxury British brand burnt the products, totalling £28.6 million in value, including £10.4 million of beauty items, according to detail in its annual report. Designer labels such as Burberry, it is claimed, do not want their products to emerge in the "grey markets" and be sold at knockdown prices.

Burberry told the BBC that "the energy generated from burning its products was captured, making it environmentally friendly".

Only selected limited edition pieces will be available for immediate purchase from Tisci's debut London Fashion Week show in September, with the full collection being released in February.

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In a statement Burberry said it seeks to reduce its waste and has partnered with the Ellen MacArthur foundation's Make Fashion Circular Initiative, "where we join other leading organisations to work towards a circular fashion economy".

Shoppers are also worked up over the waste, calling it "disgusting" and expressing outrage that the excess products aren't given to charity.

Also, Richemont, the company owning the Cartier and Montblanc brands, had destroyed more than £400 million of watches in two years after buying back unwanted stock from jewellers.

Ms Tually said overproduction results in massive waste in the global fashion industry. "Burberry is just the tip of the iceberg", she said.

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Twitter users have slammed Burberry for their decision to burn millions of pounds' worth of garments, accusing them of snobbery, trying to keep their clothes out of the hands of poor people and disregard for the environment.

John Peace, the outgoing chairman, said destroying stock is "not something we do lightly" and Chief Financial Officer Julie Brown said "we take it extremely seriously".

Retail Gazette says there may be a monetary motive for the destruction of stock, as brands can see a return of taxes on unused imports if the items are destroyed.

Writing in May, Marketing Week columnist Mark Ritson praised the Swiss luxury goods group for seeking to preserve its long-term brand equity by protecting the exclusivity of its brand among consumers and retailers alike.

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The British fashion label claims it does so to protect its brand.

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