hen it comes to thinking, behaving, and acting sustainably, there are a number of things a company like Oris can do. First, it can look at its setup and make changes to how it runs its business. Second, it can examine how its watches are produced. And third, it can look beyond its immediate surroundings to see how and where it can affect positive change.
After years of hard work and exploration, Oris asserts it is active in all three of these areas. It has significantly reduced the environmental impact of its factory at its home in Hölstein; It’s expanding its portfolio of sustainable suppliers; and it is fortunate to have partnered with a wide body of pioneering charities, social enterprises, non-profits, and businesses with a sustainability profile.
The Swiss watchmaker is also proud to have collaborated with some of the world’s most effective agents of change, businesses with a sustainability profile that matches its own. It firmly believes that it can only achieve its goal to bring “Change for the Better” when everyone works together.
In 2021, they were awarded climate neutral status by the independent organisation ClimatePartner, which helped them calculate their global carbon footprint and find formal ways to offset it.
Last year, they released their first Oris Sustainability Report and initiated the Oris Emissions Reduction Programme. Its purpose is to reduce their carbon emissions by 10 per cent a year for three years. It’s a tall order, but they’re determined.
They are also proud to have collaborated with some of the world’s most effective agents of change. They’ve produced watches with conservationists and humanitarians, including the Common Wadden Sea Secretariat, Billion Oyster Project, and Wings of Hope, which has twice been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
They’ve also partnered with the Swiss company Cervo Volante to produce watch straps made of sustainably sourced and tanned deer leather.
And now, they’re very pleased to introduce a new collaboration with the social enterprise Bracenet and the Oris X Bracenet, a watch with a dial made of ‘ghost’ and end-of-life fishing nets.
Ocean plastic statistics make difficult reading. For example, scientists believe the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP), an area of plastic waste drifting between Hawaii and California, is four and a half times the size of Germany.
That figure was calculated by the environmental engineering organisation The Ocean Cleanup, which also estimates that 46 per cent of the GPGP is made up of fishing nets that have been lost or discarded. This is particularly serious because while they may no longer be in use, these ‘ghost’ fishing nets still catch and kill marine life as they hover in the water.
Experts estimate that up to a million tonnes of fishing nets enter the oceans every year, and that a ghost net will keep fishing for 400-600 years.
It’s only recently that awareness of ghost nets has begun to rise, thanks to the vision and efforts of people like Benjamin Wenke and Madeleine von Hohenthal, founders of their new partner, the social enterprise Bracenet.
They became aware of this grim phenomenon while diving off the coast of Tanzania in 2015 and determined to do something about it. They began making bracelets out of upcycled ghost nets, and Bracenet was born. Today, the company makes a catalogue of products and accessories that transform this potentially life-threatening waste product into something beautiful that also makes a statement: change must come.
Now, they’re very proud to introduce the Oris X Bracenet, a special-edition version of the Aquis Date diver’s watch with a spectacular dial made of recycled ghost and end-of-life nets.
Making these kaleidoscopic dials involves taking small green, blue, and white offcuts and gently warming them until they melt into the raw material. As they cool, they harden into a thin sheet of material. This is then cut to size, planed, and sanded down until it’s just 0.3mm thick. The material contains no additives, fillers, or glues. No two dials are the same.
There’ll be two stainless steel versions of the watch, one with a 43.50 mm case and a second with a 36.50 mm case. Both have automatic mechanical movements and uni-directional rotating bezels, and are water-resistant to 30 bar (300 metres). More importantly, both are symbols of the change they want to see.
Case: Multi-piece stainless steel case
Sizes 43.50 mm (1.713 inches) and 36.50 mm (1.437 inches)
Dial: Upcycled ‘ghost’ fishing net
Luminous material: Hands and indices filled with Super-LumiNova
Top glass: Sapphire, domed on both sides, anti-reflective coating inside
Case back: Stainless steel, screwed, see- through mineral glass, special engravings
Operating devices: Stainless steel screw-in security crown with crown protection
Bracelet: Multi-piece stainless steel metal bracelet, security folding clasp (43.50 mm version comes with clasp extension)
Water resistance 30 bar (300 m)
Number Oris 733
Functions: Centre hands for hours, minutes and seconds, date window at 6 o’clock, instantaneous date, date corrector, fine timing device and stop-second
Power reserve 38 hours
Swiss retail price CHF 2,350