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#BlackFriday sparks chaos around the world as shoppers fight for deals

Videos on social media showed bargain hunters battling for products as far afield as Portugal and Namibia.

The madness of Black Friday has struck shoppers around the world as some retailers offer large discounts on their products to boost sales before Christmas.

Scenes of chaos filmed at stores and malls from as far afield as Portugal and South Africa have gone viral on social media as bargain-hunters hope to save money on presents for family.

A video shared by Portuguese consumer electronics shop Worten showed the moment staff opened the shutters on their store in Matosinhos, near Porto.

While the scene initially seems orderly, shoppers charged into the store as soon as guards step aside, knocking down displays, grabbing at products and filling the aisles.

É a loucura na Worten de Matosinhos!! ISTO É BLACKOUT!!!!

Posted by Worten on Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Grove Mall in Windhoek, capital of Namibia, also filled up with shoppers eager to get their hand on a bargain when electronics retailer game opened its doors at midnight.

Phillemon Ndashe, a student, said it was “crazy stuff” but added: “I couldn’t leave empty-handed.

“I managed to secure three camping chairs and a cooler box.

“We went there as a team with my group of friends so one had to stand at the cashier while others ran for the items. It was like a jungle in there.”

The same scene played out at the Game store in Potchefstroom, near Johannesburg, South Africa.

One video showed shoppers whooping and screaming, climbing over trolleys and barriers to get to the front of the crowd.

In the UK, shopping centres appeared relatively empty as many consumers went online for their purchases.

Elsewhere, a counter-movement to mass consumerism encouraged people to keep their pennies in their pockets with the hashtag #BuyNothingDay.

The GMB union used the day to stage a protest against “awful” conditions at Amazon warehouses.

A Freedom of Information request from the union discovered 600 ambulances had been called to Amazon warehouses in the last three years.

“Workers are breaking bones, being knocked unconscious and being taken away in ambulances,” they said in a tweet.

Richard Hyman, a retail industry adviser, said the concept of Black Friday was “bonkers” for UK retailers, adding: “The whole thing is smoke and mirrors.”

Mr Hyman said: “It’s encouraging people to buy at a discount when most retailers are not structured to sell at a discount.

“Black Friday sucks business forward from Christmas at a discounted margin, it’s really not very clever.”

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