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Photography by Craig Landale

Nordgreen Pioneers Sustainable Manufacturing with Watch Collection

Sustainability isn’t just a novelty feature. Going forward, it’s a series of processes that define how retailers not only design and package their products but also conduct operations. It’s an approach that extends far beyond the greenwashing of organic cotton and examines all components going into an item to simultaneously reduce a company’s and customer’s carbon footprint and provide a quality, lasting product. Nordgreen, a watch brand based in Denmark with a portmanteau-esque name directly reflective of their vision, has viewed its products in such a fashion since starting in 2017. Today, Nordgreen watches aren’t simply nice to look at and functional, but all components and manufacturing processes, plus the company’s mission, focus on reducing environmental impact.

About Nordgreen  

While also a common Danish surname, Nordgreen reflects the company’s heritage – particularly the Scandinavian region’s connection with nature – and its objectives concerning sustainability. Pascar Sivam and Vasilij Brandt started the company roughly three years ago to take sustainable, ethically responsible Danish design up to a global level, and today, chief designer Jakob Wagner – who spent over 25 years developing timepieces for Bang & Olufsen, Hay, B&B Italia, and Cappellini – is behind its visual and utilitarian appeal. Sustainability extends through all of Nordgreen’s operations – material sourcing, product design, customer service, packaging, and transportation.

Beyond crafting watches that last, reducing the need for consumers to discard a broken timepiece, Nordgreen utilises vegan leather straps, made from blended polyester and cotton; uses FSC-certified cardboard cartons and upcycled plastic bottles and avoids foam in its packaging; and manufactures its products in a Danish-owned factory in China, which follows Danish labour practices and provides safe working conditions for its employees. To offset its carbon footprint, the company plants thousands of trees in the Latin American rainforest. Yet, Nordgreen remains a forward-looking company that, even in the present, is developing new strategies to continue decreasing its environmental impact. Among them are 100% recycled packaging and digital papers to utilising additional sustainable components within each watch’s construction. As well, customers are encouraged to participate in this mission through Nordgreen’s Giving Back Program, which aims to address health, educational, and environmental issues facing communities across the globe. For the Giving Back Program, Nordgreen partners with three NGOs to assist with their causes: donating two months of clean water, two months of education, or protecting 200 square feet of rainforest. Customers then choose the cause to which Nordgreen contributes, either during purchase or by using the serial and identification numbers found on each watch.

Pioneer Watches  

When we picture a chronograph, we often envision it as a technical or racing watch, large in size and sporty in style with a prominent tachymeter and other features geared toward performance. Through this lens, Nordgreen’s Pioneer watch seems a tad deceptive—like a classic wristwatch until you take a closer look and get to know its story and features. Instead of early 20th century auto racing as its inspiration, Nordgreen pulled from Danish innovation – specifically, wind turbine technology and minimalist, functional designs that, at least in the present, embody quintessentially Scandinavian construction. Through this simple, straightforward perspective, all of the key features emerge: you’ll spot two dials on the watch face and a stopwatch inspired by a wind turbine, itself a symbol of Denmark’s advancements in clean energy technology and centuries of innovation dating back to the Vikings and encompassing diabetes treatments and Legos. The watch face includes a chronograph second hand and a stopwatch third hand, both with red tips.

As well, these now-standard aspects attest to Nordgreen’s commitment to sturdy, sustainable design while simultaneously (and a tad indirectly) celebrating Denmark’s tradition of Science for Humanity: a 316L stainless steel body with a domed sapphire crystal and a choice of modern colour options, including gunmetal and rose gold for a more fashion-forward consumer. Its minimalist look and name, beyond being what’s perceived as Scandinavian utilitarian, are intentional and forward-looking – symbolising the less wasteful, functional, and quality-based world Nordgreen strives to promote with its company practices and Giving Back Program. While the Pioneer’s design is relatively neutral, Nordgreen crafted the case with a 42mm size, ideal for male wrists, and 20mm wide strap. Also reflecting its practical, precise nature, the Pioneer uses Japanese Quartz movement, provides 5 ATM water resistance, and comes with interchangeable straps.

Nordgreen is giving MenswearStyle readers a 35% discount for Black Friday (21st November until 1st December 2020) – the largest discount code available online for Nordgreen and higher than the brand’s own 20-30% off Black Friday watches discount. Set a reminder in your calendar and use code Menswear35 at nordgreen.co.uk

Ivan Yaskey

Philadelphia’s streetwear scenes and working as a copywriter for a Boston-based menswear brand sparked Ivan's passion for fashion and style more than a decade ago.

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