The unsustainable cost of free returns

Environmental costs

Returns in the US alone create 5 billion pounds of landfill waste and 15 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually, equivalent to the amount of trash produced by 5 million people in a year, according to Optoro. In the EU, total packaging waste in 2016 amounted to nearly 87 million tonnes or about 170 kg per person. The majority of brands rely on single-use plastic materials, which are difficult, if not impossible, to recycle.

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CARLY LLEWELLYN

Senior Director of Corporate Marketing