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Topic: So ANGRY! WalMart ripping up and throwing out NEW unused patterns!  (Read 5126 times)
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« Reply #40 on: December 29, 2005 02:10:41 PM »

This is sadly standard practice for many corporations.  It allegedly "costs them too much" to donate.  I once worked next door to a Barnes & Noble and did a bit of dumpster diving (thankfully in the paper-only recycling bin) to load up my car with their old books.  I kept some, donated a bunch, and half price book-ed the rest. Corporate America is a scary, scary place:(

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« Reply #41 on: December 30, 2005 05:45:30 PM »

Another former fabric store employee chiming in here - while Wal-Mart may be (OK, definitely is!) evil in many and varied ways, the ripping up patterns thing is NOT them. It's the pattern companies. In order to keep coming out with spiffy new patterns, they *have* to retire the old ones. This is done by sending the retailers a list of the discontinued ones, and someone at that shop has to go through the pattern drawers pulling *and listing* all of those. The patterns are then supposed to be destroyed, although most places I've worked just popped them into the recycling bin (which was in a locked area anyway). The store or department manager had to sign off that the patterns had been pulled *and destroyed*. The signed list goes back to Simplicity or wherever and the store gets credit.

Donating would be counterproductive because then people would just wait for that, and wouldn't buy new patterns. I know they're expensive, but *I* can't draft a pattern to save my life and am quite happy t they are available to buy....

It's also a copyright issue, since patterns are creative products.

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« Reply #42 on: December 31, 2005 08:29:51 AM »

It happens with clothes and stuff too.
One day in one of my numerous crappy jobs I spent hours cutting up clothes because they were returned as faulty. They couldnt sell them so they were cut up and thrown out so no one else could have them.
« Reply #43 on: December 31, 2005 09:05:06 AM »

hey there...just piping in....I used to work at a fabric store and I know from there that the pattern companies ask for the "envelope FLAP only" be returned to do market research and the like...when I was there it was like Christmas for the employees because we could take all the patterns we wanted as long as we handed in that flap from the envelopes....Walmart should donate to local charities or schools considering thier push to look more community oriented...

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« Reply #44 on: December 31, 2005 09:13:50 AM »

Wow, this is a really old topic, I barely remember posting it way back when!

I understand the reasons behind it and ripping up patterns now I suppose, but I still don't endorse it.  Walmart probably buys these patterns for 2 cents each, they're paying their employees MORE than that to spend the time ripping them up.  Considering how much money Walmart makes, I don't see why they can't take the small loss on the patterns, and do something good with them.

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« Reply #45 on: January 11, 2006 09:40:15 PM »

Okay, I just read through this WHOLE thing and what I am wondering is why did the woman want to look at the patterns you were going to buy to make sure she didn't have to tear them up? I mean I understand that they have to send the UPC or whatever back to the company and say that the item was destroyed and everything, but if you were going to buy it then Wal-Mart and the pattern company would get their precious money anyway. So what does it matter if you buy it or they tear it up, it just doesn't make sense to me. AND, what really sucks is that consumers pay however much for a mass-produced pattern that probably only costs like 50 cents or less to make anyway, I mean, its paper. So then, they tear up all these probably, like thousands of patterns and I'm sure they don't recycle so now they're just wasting trees. I mean I'm sure there are people who make up the patterns for the pattern company and they have to pay those people for that but they probably don't get paid all that much compared to the people who own the company that wouldn't even make money if it weren't for the people who made up the patterns. I hate big corporations.

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« Reply #46 on: January 11, 2006 10:24:38 PM »

I work for a national grocery store, and every morning, we throw out carts of old bread, meat, and cheese... Donations, while nice in theory, could lead to a down-and-out shelter person suing the co-operation for giving them food that is bad.  This is why we don't mark down/give away the fresh stuff.
My mom works in the deli of an expensive grocery store and it just about broke my heart when she told me about a half dozen submarine sandwiches that she had to throw out that had been made that very morning with fresh ingredients and were kept in a refrigerated case all day. $40 worth of sandwiches, just thrown in the trash! Argh!
I saw on 20/20 that there are some people who call themselves "freegans" who go through grocery store and restaurant dumpsters in hopes of finding just this kind of stuff; perfectly good food that stores don't want to discount but can't sell for full price either. I would never actually try this, but it does raise a pretty good point.
« Reply #47 on: January 12, 2006 11:36:01 AM »

Since there is some logic (however misguided) to the ripping-up of outmoded or returned merchandise, it may be easier to convince the major retailers to recycle the stuff at the very least. This is pretty obvious with paper products, but textiles can also be recycled if sold/donated to a rag merchant.
I found this:


which is a bit meaty but an interesting read. It's a UK website, but if it can be done in Britain it can be done in Canada and the US, too.

The lessons to learn form the article:
1. Quit using paper towels (hard to sell textile rags when everyone uses Bounty)!
2. Keep buying clothing, bedding, fabric, etc from thrift shops!
3. Repair, remodel, revamp (i.e keep crafting!).
4. Choose natural-fibre and/or single-fibre where possible.
« Reply #48 on: January 12, 2006 11:46:54 AM »

I have not read all of the entries on this thread, but I just wanted to put my two cents in. I am not very fond of Wal-mart, but have to get my supplies there because I have no other option and I can't afford to travel. However, This past summer my Wal-Mart donated various sewing notions to the 4-H chapter in town. It included, needles, thread, and other misc. items that were "discontinued" or something to that effect. As for the patterns, I don't know what they do with them.
« Reply #49 on: January 12, 2006 11:54:28 AM »

oooooh.. this just hit home big time.. i work for a major retailer & we are constantly throwing stuff out.. of course we have to destroy it first..eeeeeeek Shocked  it just makes me ill.. as a big believer in the reduce, reuse & recycle philosophy.. i made it known how i felt about this policy.. only to find out that it is the manufacturer who makes this decision.. they won't give money back & they won't let the retailers donate the item.. how sad is that.. i think we should start a letter writing campaign to these major manufacturers & let them know how we feel about these practices...  Cry

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