Vegan sneakers company Flamingos’ Life is the latest to boycott Black Friday, deciding to close its website for the day.
Flamingos’ Life is saying no to Black Friday by closing its website for the entire day on November 27.
Black Friday, the biggest day on the retail calendar, has previously been criticised for its impact on the planet. While the discounts and savings can be big, environmentalists argue that it makes people buy things they don’t need, and the overconsumption is a factor of climate change.
Flamingos’ Life, which makes vegan sneakers by using recycled plastic bottles, is the latest brand to boycott Black Friday. “We did not want to participate in an event with such an atrocious impact for the planet; it is not coherent with our philosophy and values,” said Alejandro González Braceli, the brand’s chief marketing officer.
“We thought that we could use our platform to create awareness about the inhuman and non-ecological consequences of Black Friday. That is why we decided to create a video showing what Black Friday really involves,” he explained. The video, titled ‘Say No To Black Friday’ uses bold, emotive phrases like “It has to do with love” to drive its point home. “For the last two weeks, we have decided to focus our communication on all our channels on spreading this message and trying to reach as many people as possible.”
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In addition to the video, Flamingos’ Life is also shutting down its website for the day. González Braceli described it as the best way to ensure the brand doesn’t contribute to Black Friday: “A strong consumerism peak takes place during this day, sales soar and the big companies make whatever it takes to cover that demand, and it does not matter what this involves.”
He admitted that while the company’s sales will be affected, the decision has got more to do with the benefits it has on humans and the planet. “The people who work at the bottom of the supply chain are the ones who pay the consequences. However, everybody is also affected by this, as the destruction of the planet is increasing with actions like this. Not producing any sales is our opportunity to make this day less harmful.”
González Braceli appealed to brands’ key philosophies and values, explaining that companies now have to choose whether they want to participate in the discount frenzy: “If they are really committed and are willing to act, they will stop doing Black Friday. Final consumers also have a lot of power on changing the impact of Black Friday — buying only what they really need and from companies committed to the salvation of the planet will make a big difference.”
The Flamingos’ Life marketing officer added that apart from Black Friday, there are many issues in the fashion industry that start from the bottom. Raw materials, labour conditions and gas pollutants are all part of the problem. “All these factors trigger ecological degradation and a loss of empathy. Developing promotions with fast sales only makes this problem worse,” he said.
“Big fast fashion companies must take responsibility for what they make and how this affects everybody on the planet. The moment they will start to prioritise the salvation of the planet over their economical benefit, it would be a big change for the industry.”