Towards A Greener Future – How Watchmakers Are Contributing To Sustainability

22 Mar, 2023 Chat 0
Towards A Greener Future – How Watchmakers Are Contributing To Sustainability

As the world pushes towards a more sustainable future, luxury watchmakers are embracing eco-friendly initiatives to promote environmental protection and sustainability. The watch industry has recognised its responsibility to protect the environment, as brands are wearing their capes to rescue the earth and have taken steps towards sustainable watchmaking. Here are ways the luxury watch industry is creating a better and more sustainable world.

Using Eco-friendly Materials

Sustainable materials are the foundation of environment-friendly watchmaking. Luxury watch brands have now gradually started to adopt eco-friendly materials for the construction of timepieces, such as recycled plastics, ethically sourced precious metals, and sustainable leather straps. A brand that has been at its forefront is Panerai. They recently launched a watch made from EcoTitanium, a material made entirely from recycled titanium. In addition, Panerai is committed to reducing its environmental impact by using 100% recycled and recyclable packaging. Another brand that has made significant progress in using sustainable materials is Omega. The brand uses recycled stainless steel and ethically sourced gold in its watches, and its leather straps come from sustainable sources.

Supporting Conservation Initiatives

Luxury watch brands are taking steps to support conservation projects through their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. CSR initiatives have become essential to the watch industry’s efforts towards environmental sustainability. Brands are contributing to projects that safeguard wildlife and their habitats. TAG Heuer has a long history of supporting conservation projects. The brand has partnered with the World Surf League to promote sustainability in surfing, and its latest Aquaracer collection is designed to raise awareness for ocean conservation. The brand has also created a special edition watch, the Aquaracer Tortoise Shell Effect, whose proceeds support turtle conservation in Indonesia. The Aquatimer collection by IWC features a Darwin edition that pays tribute to the efforts of preserving the flora-fauna of the Galapagos islands. IWC has since 2009 been supporting the Charles Darwin Foundation.

IWC Schaffhausen pledges itself to ecologically responsible behaviour and pursues a corporate strategy based firmly on sustainability

Georges Kern, CEO IWC Schaffhausen—

Further, Carl F. Bucherer is a brand that pays attention to the rising concern of preserving the underwater ecosystem for the conservation of rare Manta Ray species is Carl F. Bucherer. The Maison has partnered with the U.K.-based Manta Trust and launched a special edition Patravi ScubaTec Black Manta watch that features graphics of Manta Rays floating on the dial.

special edition Carl F. Bucherer Patravi ScubaTec Black Manta 00.10632.28.33.99
special edition Carl F. Bucherer
IWC Aquatimer Chronograph Edition Expedition Charles Darwin
IWC Limited Edition watch for men
Carl F. Bucherer ScubaTec Black Manta Special Edition and IWC Aquatimer Chronograph Edition Expedition Charles Darwin

Clean And Environment-Friendly Manufacturing Processes

Clean and green manufacturing processes are essential to eco-friendly watchmaking. Brands are incorporating sustainable manufacturing techniques, such as using renewable energy sources, reducing water usage, and minimising waste. IWC Schaffhausen has installed a photovoltaic system on the roof of its factory, which generates enough energy to cover 90% of the factory’s electricity needs. The brand has also reduced water usage by 40% by optimising its production processes.

Sustainable Packaging

Packaging is an essential part of the manufacturing process and is a practice where brands can contribute immensely to sustainability. Today, watchmakers have started taking steps to minimize waste by using recycled and recyclable materials for packaging. Breitling has committed to using recycled cardboard boxes and has eliminated all single-use plastics from its packaging. Blancpain has made significant strides in sustainable packaging using FSC-certified cardboard and paper, and all its packaging materials are 100% recyclable. Watch brands are taking measures towards more sustainable and clean processes that don’t impact the environment negatively.

Breitling's sustainable packaging
Breitling created the first eco-friendly watch box that is foldable and reusable. It is made of 100% upcycled plastic bottles. (Image credit: Breitling)

Collaborative Efforts Within The Industry for Environmental Preservation And Sustainability

Collaboration within the watch industry has become vital for promoting sustainability. Brands are working together to create a positive impact on the environment. The watch industry’s Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) Chain-of-Custody Certification is an excellent example of industry collaboration. The initiative aims to create a responsible supply chain for the watchmaking industry, ensuring that all materials used in production are ethically and sustainably sourced. A brand that has achieved the RJC Chain-of-Custody Certification is Chopard. The brand is committed to using ethical and sustainable materials and has a long-standing partnership with the WWF to promote environmental conservation.

Today, many jewellery and watch brands are committed to using only traceable, fairly-mined gold, like Bulgari, Messika, and Chopard. (Image credit: Vogue Business)

Closing Remarks

The luxury watch industry is making significant strides towards creating a more sustainable future. It is pacing towards a more environmentally responsible tomorrow through such methods. Not only are eco-friendly luxury watches better for the environment, but they also positively impact the communities where they are produced. Brands that use ethically sourced materials and support conservation initiatives are helping to create a more sustainable future for all.

Consumers can also be crucial in promoting sustainability in the luxury watch industry. By purchasing eco-friendly luxury watches, they can support brands prioritising sustainability and encourage other brands to follow suit. Consumers can also promote sustainability by disposing of watch packaging responsibly and recycling old watches. Together, we can positively impact the environment and create a more sustainable future.


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