Maybe you've noticed? The corona discounts of chains have started...
The chains that only last month sent out a press release in which they loudly said they wanted to focus on sustainability (and sometimes wrongly mark it on their website), now - because of Corona- give no less than 60% discount! Panic soccer to save income during this crisis, but no sustainable first move... But a gap in a greenwashing sustainability campaign and killing for the little ones who want to do what is right and still try to keep their heads above water.
Now that retailers are obliged to close their doors, new initiatives are being set up to be able to serve the customer and make money. But fitting bags, home delivery and virtual styling sessions such as COSH retailers are now doing a lot will not be enough to absorb the loss to some extent. If we are to believe the forecast, stores will not be able to reopen immediately after 5 April. With the sales period and the gigantic corona discounts of the chains (already and now) in prospect, this gives little optimism for small retailers.
"If, as always, the crazy fashion season lets conditional sales continue and sales start in June, this means that in the best-case scenario there is now only 1.5 months of resale. Impossible to get your budget out of this for the next season. So it's time to overthrow the dictates of fashion giants and chains, regulate sales much more strictly again and let the real sales go on at the end of the season. Read winter sales at the end of February, summer sales at the end of August." According to Stefanie of Harvest Club in Leuven.
"Time and time again my retailers tell me that sales are a big stumbling block. Competing against the big chains in terms of supply and discounts becomes almost impossible! Covid 19 causes a lot of doubt among these local retailers and puts enormous pressure on their financial situation. The adjustment of the sales period in Belgium, and by extension throughout Europe, is an excellent opportunity to help these entrepreneurs". Vanessa Beniers, designer FAM THE LABEL
A first step towards a new fashion system
Also at COSH we see the systematic selling and discount policy as a system that on the one hand makes the consumer too much accustomed to buying clothes below their actual value and on the other hand this discount movement puts systematic pressure on material and product purchase prices and thus on working conditions and environmental legislation. Instead of saving cash flow to continue with business as usual, we now have to make a countermove and stand firm.
Leaving sales is a first step in the right direction to let fashion move with the natural seasons, before we switch more and more to timeless fashion.
"To allow the free market and usury discounts is a direct violation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals." Niki de Schryver, manager COSH!
Guy Verhofstadt and Hilde Vautmans also wrote an open letter to Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for the Internal Market, to clarify the pressure on the fashion detail.
Guy Verhofstadt: "So far, a lot of attention has been paid to the impact of the corona virus on the hospitality industry. Yet there are many other sectors, such as the fashion industry, that are suffering enormously as a result".
In their letter they call for urgent measures to protect the fashion and retail industry in Europe. In addition, they call for this issue to be raised and discussed with the relevant EU ministers.
"Normal sales have been at a standstill for some time now, so it would be absurd to start selling out so early. The same applies to winter sales. It's best to move them from January to February. Secondly, we have to prevent a difference in regulations from giving clothing stores in one member state a competitive advantage over clothing stores in another member state. That's why it's high time that we worked on a common regulation for the start of seasonal sales in Europe".
We call on various organisations, ambassadors and influencers to join the joint campaign of Modeunie, Creamoda, Fedelin and COSH and bring about a revolution that will also benefit the sustainable fashion supply chain down the line.
Flanders Fashion Institute, Fashion Revolution Belgium, ambassadors, consumers, agents use your voice! The (sustainable) shops and their brands need this so much! #MOVETHESALES
Here you can download all images and quotes in High Resolution: