Announced by France’s Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe, on June 4, the new legislation for a ban on the destruction of unsold non-food items would be “a world first”. Expected to be effective towards the end of 2021 or 2023, depending on the situation, the measure aims to impose donations or the recycling of the concerned goods, and comes in addition to the measures France has already adopted in recent years against food waste.

According to the French government, more than €650 million worth of new and unsold non-food products are discarded or destroyed each year, such as clothing, beauty products or household appliances. A fact that Philippe has described as “scandalous”. The practice of destructing unsold products is widespread among large retailers and luxury brands, who see it as a means to protect intellectual property and prevent counterfeiting. “Sectors that could see a risk of deteriorating their brand image if they donate their products will always be able to transform these if they do not wish to give them away”, said Philippe. 

Source: France 24