Fast fashion leads to a swift turn around for people’s wardrobes, and the items cast aside are filling up charity bins across the world. This may sound like a positive outcome of a not so beloved industry trend; however, the cast always are arriving in such quantities that Op Shops are unable to deal with the items, creating extreme waste and actually costing the charities.
Op Shops across Australia have stopped accepting donations as they have become overrun with fast fashion or damaged items. Clothes being left outside stores or beside donation bins are becoming contaminated by the elements, deeming them unsellable and forcing the stores to throw them away. Meanwhile the items they can keep for re-sale are of very little value, thanks to the fast fashion trend. Omer Soker, a representation of the National Association of Charitable Recycling Organizations Australia released a statement discussing the issue. “If it were all quality stuff, that would be one thing, but a lot of it is fast fashion. Fast fashion has no intrinsic value in the fibres; it's not designed to last. It really should be called fast-to-landfill fashion, because ultimately that's what it is.”
Overconsumption and fast-fashion are the culprits behind this unpleasant trend, as charity shops are unable to clear piles upon piles of these valueless items. Op Shops across Australia are calling for people to carefully consider their donations, asking themselves whether or not someone will find value in the things they are bringing to their stores. While this may provide a short-term solution to the problem, the real issue is that much of the fashion industry continues to lean toward fast and disposable fashion. Which is a trend that will take a lot more effort and time to combat.