Do you know what happens when you return merchandise to major online companies? Return rate for online fashion business is 30-40% whereas the industry average for brick and mortar returns are 10%. Most returned online merchandise do not go back into the inventory - it costs more to inspect, sort, steam, re-tag, repackage, and put back into warehouse and its systems than the product's worth. There is a limit to how much jobbers or discounters can inherit these left overs to be sold. A large majority do end up in landfill or get burnt to be destroyed.
Atacama Desert in Chile where unsold apparel is dumped.
We do care about the effects the fashion industry has on environment. There will always be leftovers in any industry. But being very selective in suppliers, disciplined buying, quality control, along with high sell through and having mechanism and venues to sell off 99+% of our products are very important and responsible part of our business.
One & Last is not only a deep discount outlet but it is our products' one last stop so all of what we sell ends up in consumers' hands. It is not driven by financials but driven by our commitment to eliminate wastefulness.