Surplus store

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Van Nuys Army & Navy Surplus Store

A surplus store or disposals store in the Commonwealth of Nations sells items that are used, or purchased but unused, and no longer needed. The surplus is often military, government or industrial excess often called army-navy stores or war surplus stores in the United States. A surplus store may also sell items that are past their use by date.

Military surplus[edit]

An army surplus store, or navy surplus store, is any store, usually retail, which sells military surplus — general equipment that was intended for the military but is unable to be used or originally purchased in excess by the military. These stores often sell camping equipment or military clothing (especially jackets and helmets).

Following the First[1] and Second World Wars, large amounts of former military clothing and equipment were sold in these stores[2]

In Canada[edit]

An ordinary army surplus store in Haikou, Hainan Province, China.

Known as "army surplus" stores, these typically also carry sporting goods related to hunting, fishing, and camping.

In China[edit]

Army surplus stores in China are very common. They mostly specialize in clothing, footwear, tarpaulins and blankets, but also commonly sell occupational safety equipment.

In Germany[edit]

At the end of the Second World War, the allied forces initially confiscated stock and material of the German army. In 1948 a government agency, the Staatliche Erfassungsgesellschaft für öffentliches Gut ("State Collecting Company for Public Good", StEG), was formed to manage the sale of this army surplus. In reference to the name of this agency, the army surplus was called Stegware. The surplus included 500,000 tonnes or stock and over 150,000 tonnes of scrap. In the early 1950s the US military began to add their own surplus from the war. The joint surplus was sold in so called Steg shops across Germany until the 1980s. Goods included used and new clothing, camping equipment and tools. In the early days vehicles and heavier equipment were also sold.[3][4][5]


  1. ^ p.45 White, Sarah Madison Women Remember: Growing Up in Wisconsin's Capital Arcadia Publishing, 2006
  2. ^ p.16 Drake, Albert The Age of Hot Rods: Essays on Rods, Custom Cars and Their Drivers from the 1950s to Today McFarland, 2008
  3. ^ "STEG-LIQUIDATION / HANDEL: Es blieb etwas hängen". Der Spiegel. 16. 1955-04-13. Retrieved 2017-10-25.
  4. ^ Müller, Armin (2017-08-21). Wellenkrieg: Agentenfunk und Funkaufklärung des Bundesnachrichtendienstes 1945-1968 (in German). Ch. Links Verlag. ISBN 9783862844036.
  5. ^ Magnus, Kurt (1954). One Million Tons of War Material for Peace: The History of STEG. R. Pflaum.

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