What Retailers Like Amazon Do With Unsold Inventory

Every year, Amazon and other retailers end up with billions of pounds of excess, unsold inventory that they’re sending straight to landfills, or incinerating. Returns in the U.S. create more than 5 billion pounds of waste in landfills each year, and more than 15 million metric tons of carbon dioxide. The problem is only growing as Amazon leads the way in bringing more shoppers online, where the rate of returns is 25%, compared to just 9% for in-store purchases. Now, the e-commerce giant and other tech companies and retailers are increasing donation efforts and using data and A.I. to cut back on the wasted inventory clogging our landfills and our planet.

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