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更新時間:2019/4/23 16:49:38 來源:紐約時報中文網 作者:佚名

Will fashion firms stop burning clothes?
時裝公司焚燒衣服的傳統怎樣才能改變

Imagine being a business that regularly takes huge swathes of your own products worth millions of pounds, and incinerates them. Your stock literally going up in smoke.

你有沒有想象過,一家時裝公司需要定期燒毀價值數百萬英鎊的產品,海量庫存瞬間化為烏有。

It sounds crazy, but the practice has become increasingly common for some of the world’s biggest clothing manufacturers. Why? They argue it is the most cost-effective way of maintaining their brand’s exclusivity.

這听起來非常瘋狂,但對于全球服裝制造業大佬們來說卻是習以為常的事。為什麼要這麼做?因為他們認為這是保持品牌價值最具成本效益的方式。

The clothes that are burned are those that don’t sell at a high enough price. Rather than watch them go on sale at hefty discounts, the companies in question would rather set fire to them and recoup a small amount of energy via the incineration.

被燒掉的都是那些沒辦法以高價出售的衣服。時裝公司寧願把它們燒掉,也不願看到它們被低價拋售。

Burberry is one of the most well-known firms that, until recently, did this. In 2017, clothing worth £28.6 million was incinerated by the company a figure that made global headlines. By September 2018, following intense media scrutiny, Burberry announced it had stopped incinerating clothes with immediate effect.

知名服裝公司博柏利(Burberry,也有譯為巴寶莉)最近也被發現在這麼做。 2017年,博柏利燒毀了價值2860萬英鎊的衣服——這一數字曾登上全球頭條新聞。直到2018年9月,在輿論壓力下,博柏利才宣布停止燒毀衣服。

No-one knows exactly how much unsold stock is sent up in flames every year by the world’s fashion houses, but many clearly feel it makes business sense. Brands are under huge pressure to maintain the perception that their products which cost time and money to make are worth paying a certain amount for.

沒有人確切知道全球各大時裝公司每年有多少未售出的庫存會被付之一炬,但很多人都清楚這麼做的商業意義。品牌方承受著巨大的壓力,因為他們必須保持這樣的觀念︰自己的產品都是耗費大量時間和成本做的,得賣個好價錢才行。

“Selling them at lower and lower prices perpetuates a problem,” explains Pammi Sinha at the University of Leeds’ School of Design.

利茲大學設計學院的副教授辛哈(Pammi Sinha)解釋道︰“不斷降價出售並不能解決問題的根源。”

But incineration has some very negative consequences. Burning clothes of course releases carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, which exacerbates global warming.

但焚燒的後果非常糟糕。焚燒衣服勢必會把二氧化碳和其他溫室氣體排放到大氣中,從而加劇全球變暖。

A UK parliamentary committee report on sustainability and the fashion industry published in February considered the various environmental impacts of incineration.

英國議會委員會2月份發表的關于可持續發展和時尚產業的報告提到了焚燒對環境的各種影響。

It said, “While incineration of unsold stock ‘recovers’ some energy from the products, it multiplies the climate impact of the product by generating further emissions and air pollutants that can harm human health.

報告指出︰雖然通過焚燒庫存能使企業從滯銷的產品中得到些許恢復,但卻進一步排放︰θ死#32654;高梅官方网站的廢棄和空氣污染物,加深了產品對氣候的影響。

“Incineration of clothes made from synthetic fibres may release plastic microfibres into the atmosphere.”

“焚燒由合成縴維制成的衣服可能會將塑料微縴維排放到大氣中。”報告說。

The report advised the government to ban the burning or dumping of unsold stock if it can be reused or recycled.

報告還建議政府禁止燃燒或傾倒未售出的庫存,盡可能重復使用或回收。

Sinha says that part of the problem is that fashion firms are built from the ground up to produce and sell products. The only option for much unsold stock is disposal. Entire assembly lines are constructed with this model in mind. Naturally, that can lead to a lot of waste. Elizabeth Napier at Georgia State University says of 100 billion garments made every year worldwide, 92 million tons become waste.

辛哈分析稱,部分原因是時裝公司從成立之初起,就只生產和銷售服裝。大多數未售出庫存的唯一出路便是銷,整個服裝生產線正是以這個模型構建的。但這麼做肯定會導致浪費。佐治亞州立大學的納皮爾(Elizabeth Napier)說,全球每年生產1000億件服裝,產生了9200萬噸廢品。

This could change, though. What if those companies had an arm tasked with taking back clothes that haven’t been sold so that they can be disassembled, redesigned into new products, and shipped out to the market once again?

但也有辦法改變這種情況。如果時裝公司設置一個專門負責回收未出售庫存的部門,再在拆分之後重新設計成新產品,輸送到市場上呢?

“Within a big luxury label where their reputation rests on design, they could possibly put together a design and production team for this,” explains Sinha.

辛哈解釋說︰“大型奢侈品牌的聲譽主要依賴于設計,他們完全可以為此安排一個專門的設計和制作團隊。”

That would require some investment and, for the venture to be worthwhile, companies would have to make sure the remade products are desirable so that the waste problem isn’t simply kicked down the road. But in principle it would be a step up from simply burning or dumping products in huge quantities.

這麼做不僅需要一些投資,且為了證明這一大膽嘗試是值得的,公司必須確保重新再造的產品是受歡迎的,只有這樣服裝廢品問題才不是被簡單地踢掉,而是比簡單的焚燒或傾倒往前邁了一步。

Some firms are leading the way on upcycling where unwanted products are remade into desirable new attire. That can include reusing anything from old industrial fabrics to unsold clothing from other companies.

一些品牌的升級再造技術處于領先地位——未出售的服裝被重新制作成受歡迎的新裝,包括重復使用舊的工業面料和其他公司未售出的服裝。

LA-based brand Reformation is one example of a firm that takes such “deadstock” clothing and reuses the materials in its own designs. Nearly 15% of the fabric Reformation uses comes from deadstock.

洛杉磯的一家公司就是一個品牌升級再造的例子,這家公司利用“無用庫存”服裝並把這些材料重新用在自己的設計中。公司幾乎15%的織物改造均來自“無用庫存”。

There’s also an opportunity to focus on biodegradable fabrics. Clothes that decompose better might not have to be burned. They would also appeal to many consumers who care about the environmental impact of their own wardrobes.

可生物降解的面料也值得關注。如果衣服能得到更好的分解就可能不需要焚燒,也會吸引許多關心衣物影響環境的消費者。

For significant effects to be felt, though, the fashion giants would have to take sustainability practices, like those mentioned above, on board. It can’t be left to start-ups and bespoke brands. That brings us to the bigger picture and the other major hurdle for sustainability in the fashion industry.

然而,只有時尚巨頭們采取上述可持續發展策略才能取得明顯效果。時裝業的可持續發展不能只依靠初創品牌和定制品牌。這讓我們進一步了解時裝業可持續發展的另一個主要障礙。

In essence, we have an over-production problem. According to data from the World Bank, analysed by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, while clothing sales have risen steadily since the year 2000, clothing utilisation has fallen at roughly the same rate. That means for every extra t-shirt that is sold, it will be worn roughly half as much as it would have been 20 years ago.

歸根結底,我們面臨的其實是過度生產的問題。由艾倫麥克阿瑟基金會分析的世界銀行數據顯示,自2000年以來,服裝銷售額穩步上升,服裝使用率卻以相同的速度下降。這意味著每多售出一件T恤,它的使用率是20年前的一半。

“I definitely think we’re in a position where we’re over-supplying the market and we’ve got to rethink,” says Sinha.

辛哈說︰“當前服裝市場必然是供過于求的,我們必須重新思考。”

Napier agrees. She says that one way fashion firms could avoid having to burn so many clothes is through better forecasting of market trends, which would in theory result in less waste. But a move towards making clothes designed to last would help greatly. Garments with long lives can of course be marketed as good investments for customers.

納皮爾深表贊同。她說,時裝公司可以通過更好地預測市場趨勢避免燒掉這麼多衣服,理論上可以減少浪費。設計並制作經久耐穿的衣服也是一個重要的舉措。顧客當然也願意投資耐穿的服裝。

“It makes consumers feel better about their purchases,” says Napier.

納皮爾說︰“這會讓消費者購物感覺更好。”

She gives the example of Patagonia, one among several outdoor brands that guarantee the long life of their products.

她舉了巴塔哥尼亞(Patagonia)的例子,巴塔哥尼亞是注重服裝使用壽命的戶外品牌之一。

Both Sinha and Napier argue that ending the incineration of unsold clothes won’t happen simply through fashion firms reusing and recycling materials. The sheer scale of fashion production has to change too.

辛哈和納皮爾一致認為,只有通過時裝公司重復使用和回收材料,才能終結對未售庫存的焚燒。大規模生產服裝的方式也必須改變。

And it’s important to recognise that these consumer-focused brands will only go where the market takes them. If protecting the environment really matters to the public, then they have to make clear that they want more sustainable clothing in the first place.

更加重要的是,這些以消費者為中心的品牌只會跟著市場走,如果公眾真的重視保護環境,那麼他們就必須明確想要生產可持續的服裝。

“Without consumers demanding that, it won’t change,” says Napier.

納皮爾說︰“消費者如果沒有這個需求,時裝業的現狀就不會改變。”

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