Greenpeace has found that Amazon scraps around 20 cubic meters of new goods a week at its logistics center in Winsen an der Luhe. This corresponds to the volume of a truck load. Photos by Greenpeace say, among other things, are in boxes labeled "Electrical" Electronics items collected that should still be fully functional.
Amazon has both goods returned by customers and new goods destroyed. If third parties do not sell certain products in the marketplace, storage will eventually become unprofitable. For these cases, Amazon offers the destruction of the goods for a fee that should be less than the storage costs.
Amazon has long been criticized for the practice of destroying goods that are still usable rather than using them for other purposes. In summer 2018, the practice became known through reports from ZDF and Wirtschaftswoche.
Dealer association defends the practice
The Bundesverband E-Commerce und Versandhandel defends the practice by referring to the legal situation of the retailers. "The idea of legally prohibiting the destruction of returned goods is nonsense. No company in my industry has an interest in throwing away or destroying commercially usable goods.", said Gero Furchheim, President of the Federal Association, in the summer of 2019. Contracts with brand manufacturers often prohibit retailers from using them elsewhere.
The Greens, on the other hand, want to prohibit mail order companies like Amazon from destroying returned, as good as new goods. The leader of the Greens in the Bundestag, Katrin Göring-Eckhardt, described the procedure as "Perversion of the throwaway society",