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Brief Published: 28 May 2020

Clothing Boxes Provide Solution to Overstock Problem


With fashion brands cancelling orders due to Covid-19 lockdowns, many garment workers have been left unpaid. But UK shopping app Mallzee has created Lost Stock as a solution to this problem. Consumers can buy boxes of surplus stock directly from the factories, with proceeds going to the workers and their families.

Staff in developing countries such as Bangladesh have been greatly affected by fashion retailers’ cancelled orders during the pandemic, which has temporarily closed stores worldwide. Many have been left without wages to support themselves or their households. In addition, these cancellations could result in huge amounts of wasted product going to landfill. Lost Stock ensures that this product is still sold, and these workers can still receive a wage.

Customers simply select their gender, size and preferred style on the Lost Stock site, and a box of clothes tailored to their choice will be sent to them at a discounted rate of 50% off the recommended retail price. Each box contains a guaranteed amount of at least three items that would have been destined for the high street, and will support a worker in Bangladesh for one week.

Although the lockdowns have caused difficulties for many brands, Mallzee has proven that there are sustainable and ethical options available.

For further innovative brand responses to the outbreak, see Covid-19: Fashion Industry Survival Strategies. Also, keep an eye on our Coronavirus: Updates & Brand Responses page for daily updates, and see Strategies for Overcoming Overstock for more on how brands are dealing with this problem during the crisis.