A woman in Philadelphia posted on TikTok to voice her concern after she allegedly saw a Vans employee discard several pairs of Vans sneakers in front of the local Vans store. She was particularly upset whenshe saw the shoes had been purposely damaged.
Sophia Schiaroli (@soso_swag), received over 2 million views, 276,000 likes and 19,000 comments after she posted her video on the platform.
“Vans literally threw out all these shoes,” she claimed the man told her. “And not only did they just throw out these shoes on the street in their boxes, they cut them so people could not use them.”
However, when Schiaroli later returned to the Vans store where the shoes had been allegedly dumped, everything had been cleaned up.
Like Schiaroli, people were upset at seeing pairs of damaged Vans being thrown away.
“I don’t even throw out my gently used shoes, this needs an explanation,” replied @jemmikuluk.
This isn’t the first time a company has been called out for damaging goods or for throwing product out on the street. In June, Anna Sacks (@thetrashwalker) posted a video about Starbucks allegedly throwing out bags of unused cups and food on a New York City sidewalk.
Sacks also has gone viral for calling out Coach for engaging in the same practices that Schiaroli is accusing Vans of.
“As you can see, they’re all slashed, which is Coach’s policy,” she claimed. “This is what they do with unwanted merchandise.”
In both cases, social media users expressed their disapproval with the amount of waste big corporations were seemingly creating and called for them to donate instead of trashing what they had.
Although many commenters were angered at seeing Vans discard so many shoes, other people argued that this is a common occurrence for many companies.
“Corporate policy at a lot of retail stores is to further destroy products that cannot be sold for whatever reason,” commented @2softforallofit.
According to Diet Prada, an Instagram-based fashion and culture account, there are several reasons why companies intentionally damage merchandise, but one of the most likely reasons is that businesses do this for tax purposes.
“In practice, damaging goods raises the costs of the goods sold for retailers, which in turn results in a lower gross profit. In short, damaged inventory reduces a tax bill,” the outlet wrote in one of its posts.
While many companies may do this for tax benefits, some people in Schiaroli’s comments, who appeared to be Vans employees or retail workers, tried to provide additional context to the situation.
“A lot of vans shoes have been coming in with mold, we have to cut those ones. we usually donate but can’t with those,” replied @wait__no__huh.
Other comments tried to corroborate this explanation.
“This happened with us at journeys too! some boxes that came directly from vans were moldy but the vans that were mixed in w jys shipments were okay,” commented @dopegoblin.
In The Know by Yahoo reached out to Vans for comment but has not received a response.
Vans’ motive for the shoe dumping is still a matter of conjecture, but TikTokers are trying to figure out why it happened.
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