L.U.C Tourbillon QF Fairmined - The world’s first watch created from Fairmined gold
At Baselworld 2014, Chopard is launching the world’s first watch made of Fairmined gold from South America. This new creation bears testament to Chopard’s commitment to sustainable and ethical luxury through ‘The Journey’ project, launched in 2013.
For the first time Chopard’s workshops have used ‘Fairmined’ gold to produce the L.U.C Tourbillon QF Fairmined, an elegant tourbillon model with a nine-day power reserve. After finding initial expression in the realm of Haute Joaillerie, Chopard’s ethical commitment is now embodied in Fine Watchmaking.
The main parts of this watch (case-back, case and bezel) are entirely made of ‘Fairmined’ gold. This certification guarantees that the gold was mined in a responsible manner and that the miners themselves receive fair payment and an overall premium, thereby demonstrating that gold can be sustainably mined.
This watch highlights the long-term partnership between Chopard and the South American, Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM). ARM is the NGO behind the ‘Fairmined’ standard for artisanal gold mining and works in close collaboration with miners and gold industry experts.
Chopard and ‘Fairmined’ gold
Since 2013, Chopard began supporting the development of the Coodmilla cooperative, located in the Nariño region of Colombia. They began the process to achieve ‘Fairmined’ certification – thereby enabling it to provide training, source materials and deliver best practice procedures.
Chopard has also committed to purchase a substantial part of the cooperative’s output and will continue to do so once the ‘Fairmined’ standards have been met.
Chopard has set itself the target of buying a significant percentage of its gold form other ‘Fairmined’ gold stocks and is also taking an interest in other cooperatives in South America, with a view to supporting them in achieving ‘Fairmined’ certification.
Lina Villa, ARM’s Executive Director, adds: “The L.U.C Tourbillon Qualité Fleurier Fairmined, demonstrates a strong show of support from the watch and jewellery sector for fair, sustainable and responsible gold sourcing. Chopard, which is a frontrunner in this field, has led the way for the entire watch and jewellery industry by adopting ‘Fairmined’ gold. We are so proud to be developing such prestigious projects with Chopard to improve the quality of life in mining communities.”
An elegant tourbillon
Enclosed in an elegant 43 mm-diameter ‘Fairmined’ rose gold case, the new L.U.C Tourbillon Qualité Fleurier Fairmined features alternating satin-brushed and polished surfaces. Its uniquely refined grey dial is strongly focused on readability. Its subtle sunburst motif shines out from the centre of the power reserve and appears to be literally made to catch the light. It creates a remarkable contrast with the gilded Dauphine hands with their 1930s-inspired design. The hours are marked by delicately applied Roman numerals surrounded by a minute track.
The sapphire crystal case-back provides an opportunity to admire the L.U.C 02.01-L movement, driving a tourbillon and a power-reserve indicator. The latter is located at 12 o’clock and displays the movement’s remaining autonomy, amounting to a maximum of 216 hours, meaning nine days. This 25-piece limited series is water-resistant to 50 metres. It is fitted with a hand-sewn (CITES certified) alligator leather strap – matt black on the outside and chestnut brown with small scales on the inside – secured by a pin buckle which, like the case, is made of Fairmined 18-carat rose gold.
Fleurier Quality Foundation: a global certification
The L.U.C Tourbillon Qualité Fleurier Fairmined watch has been submitted to the Fleurier Quality Foundation watchmaking tests. This independent certification boasting a unique scope is reputedly extremely hard to achieve and is currently celebrating its tenth anniversary. Alongside this decade of experience, its strength and legitimacy stem from prestigious institutions such as the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute and Chronofiable, which perform testing in addition to the label’s own procedures. This enables it to rightly claim to be the watch industry’s most demanding certification.
The certification process consists in a series of steps aimed at guaranteeing the precision of the watch movement, as well as its reliability, its durability and the quality of its aesthetic finishing. After the movement, the complete finished watch is also tested in simulated wearing conditions on the specially created Fleuritest machine. This quest for fine workmanship in all aspects of the watch is part of a determination to achieve global quality. A pioneering member of the Fleurier Quality Foundation, Chopard holds the record for the largest number of models to have earned this certification.
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