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June 2021

In the age of sustainable development

Watchmaking is now part of tomorrow’s world, spurred on by manufacturers.

Bracelet TimberTex, à base de papier, composés à 80 % de fibre végétale, chez IWC.
Chez Panerai, la Submersible eLab-ID est réalisée à partir de plus de 98 % de matériaux recyclés. 


Gold is the most widely used raw material in watch manufacture. Trailblazing Chopard has been using only 100% ethical gold since 2018, not to mention meeting the most stringent environmental and social standards. The house rigorously plays the transparency card by sourcing responsibly (diamonds, gemstones, gold, leather). In the wake of this development, Breitling has also been able to bounce back. It launched a SuperOcean watch with Econyl straps made from regenerated nylon waste. With Outerknown, the sustainable clothing brand co-founded by surfer Kelly Slater. The watchmaker has gone one step further with foldable reusable watch boxes created entirely from upcycled plastic bottles. This sustainable packaging concept has also been awarded the Efficient Solution label by the Solar Impulse Foundation, which has identified 1,000 solutions aiming to protect the environment profitably. Customers can still opt for the traditional box and support the urban reforestation project initiated by SUGi (Urban Forests) by making a voluntary contribution.

Over 98% recycled materials
A special mention goes to Panerai too, which is stepping up its actions. Not content with partnering UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, the Italian house unveils the Submersible eLab-ID watch. This 30-piece limited edition is made from over 98% recycled materials, whereas the Luminor Marina eSteel is made from a recycled steel alloy. Long live upcycling! More anecdotic but equally creditable, IWC innovates by equipping four of its Portofino models with paper-based TimberTex watch straps made from 80% vegetable fibres. This alternative to leather is handmade in Italy using traditional techniques, then coloured with natural vegetable dyes.


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