British channel ITV was able to obtain exclusive hidden camera images of a “destruction zone” in an Amazon warehouse, where nearly 130,000 items, often new, are destroyed each week.
New images show waste of unprecedented scale at Amazon, which is said to destroy millions of unsold items each year. Thesneaked in on hidden camera in a warehouse in Dunfermline, Scotland. The images show items in good condition, often new, marked for destruction.
Journalists fromITV News witnessed the scrapping, from , televisions, books and even protective masks still under seal. These are unsold items or customer returns, often in perfect condition. Journalists were able to follow the products to a , as well as a landfill.
The hidden camera report ofITV News in an Amazon warehouse, with images of products sent for destruction (in English, turn on automatic subtitle translation). © ITV News
130,000 items destroyed every week in a single warehouse
The phenomenon is explained by the mode of operation, which stocks products from third-party sellers in its warehouses. This space is expensive, and it is often more profitable for sellers to throw away their unsold items to avoid these fees rather than pay for their return. The channel was able to interview a former Amazon employee, who said they had quotas of 130,000 items to be destroyed each week, for a single warehouse.
These figures are corroborated by images from a screen that shows 124,332 items to be destroyed, compared to just 27,213 items donated to charity. In an interview with the channel, John Boumphrey, Amazon’s national director at, had nevertheless indicated that a number ” extremely weak »Objects were destroyed. If the figures are representative of the operation of the firm’s warehouses around the world, it could represent tens of millions of items destroyed each week. In the UK alone, Amazon has 24 similar centers.