“One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is the motto for dumpster divers. One Redditor hit the treasure trove when they looked in the dumpster behind a store to find loads of perfectly good and unopened products.
The Redditor shared their findings to the r/DumpsterDiving subreddit, including a photo of the items reclaimed from the trash. There is an assortment of items, including toys, sunscreen, cleaning supplies, and apparel. They noted that “all this was in the dumpster” as the “store is being remodeled.”
In some cases, it is easier and cheaper for stores to throw out unnecessary merchandise instead of trying to find a new home for them (like with a charity organization, for example).
It’s quite common for stores to throw out goods to clear shelf space for other products, especially for stores that sell perishable goods like grocery stores. Even unsold plants at home improvement stores are thrown away!
If you’re wondering why stores don’t donate unused goods, the rationale it can be as simple as being too logistically burdensome to donate or as nefarious as not wanting resellers to sell products at a discount.
The dumpster-diving community acts as an informal defense against waste, but it can’t lay all on their shoulders. It’s estimated that 21 billion pounds of textiles are thrown out every year, and grocery stores throw out about 10% of what they stock on their shelves. It’s a big problem, but it’s easily mitigated by better practices. Better inventory tracking, a focus on slower consumerism, and increasing donations are great techniques for stores that want to curb their waste.
The commenters are excited about the Redditor’s findings, especially since the toys would be great to donate to “plenty of charities [who] would welcome them.”
“Wow! So many nice things,” said one user.
“This is happening near me too, tonight is the first night of the reset and I’m so excited to get out there!” wrote another.
A third dumpster diver shared they have not had the same luck as the original poster; they said when “I come across a store being remodeled, I’ve only ever found ripped up sheet rock, empty paint Buckets, dirty filters, and junk.”
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