Luxury fashion brand Burberry has faced plenty of criticism this month, as environmentally-conscious individuals denounced them for burning more than $37 million worth of their clothes in an attempt to keep the designs exclusive to their brand.
Now, the world’s largest online secondhand retailer, thredUp, has penned an open letter to Burberry, noting the environmental effects of the brand’s waste and proposing a solution.
“We are in the midst of an environmental crisis exacerbated by the fashion industry,” reads the letter, shared on thredUp’s social media platforms. “Fashion is now responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions, and is projected to drain a quarter of the world’s carbon budget by 2050. We respect the desire to protect your brand image, but discounting your product shouldn’t be scarier than setting it on fire.”
thredUp invited Burberry to send them any unsold product for resale on their secondhand site, promising to donate 100% of the proceeds to the environmental charity of their choice. “If extending the life of a single garment can reduce its carbon, water, and waste footprint by 73%, imagine the impact of $37.8M of unsold product,” they wrote.
“At thredUp we believe in extending the life of clothes,” the company said in a statement to Fortune. “The single best thing we can do for the planet is to reuse what’s already been created. Resellers and retailers can and should unite to make this happen. Fashion waste is only accelerating and it’s time to reevaluate these shockingly commonplace practices. We hope this letter sparks conversation and change.”
The letter as already received plenty of support on social media, with individuals praising thredUp for their environmental goals while chastising Burberry with the hashtag “Burnberry.”
“Hey @Burberry – having our planet isn’t a luxury, like your clothes. It’s essential. And you’ve just proven you’re too exclusive to care,” wrote one thredUp supporter.