Coach has announced that they will no longer destroy damaged bags after a TikToker slammed the company’s practice in a now-viral video.
In a statement published on Instagram, the luxury retailer stated that they will no longer purposefully damage items returned to the store. Instead, the items will be used in their Coach Re(Loved) initiative, which is their vintage and recycled handbag collection.
“We always strive to do better, and we are committed to leading with purpose and embracing our responsibility as a global fashion brand to effect real and lasting change for our industry,” Coach wrote.
The company’s practice of butchering unsaleable bags has long been scrutinized, and yet, it was TikToker Anna Sacks who sparked positive change within the company.
In the clip, 30-year-old Sacks, a waste reduction and diversion expert, explained that she purchased a Coach bag from a fellow TikToker who resells items she finds in dumpsters. Sacks showed off several Coach handbags that were visibly slashed and explained how the company tells workers to destroy goods that cannot be sold.
“They’re all slashed, which is Coach’s policy. They order an employee to deliberately slash it so no one can use it, and then they write it off as a tax write-off under the same tax loophole as if it were accidentally destroyed,” Sacks stated. She called Coach’s actions “especially egregious” considering that they claim to support sustainability.
A Coach spokesperson spoke with Fashionista.com, where they stated that in-house destroyed goods account for “less than 1% of global sales.”