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Does Patek still use Alligator leather for their straps?

  1. lexieb007 Feb 8, 2021

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    Just curious...
    On new pieces....?
    Because Alligator mississippiensis is (still) on the EU endangered wildlife list...
    Is it not?
     
  2. Evitzee Feb 8, 2021

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    Depends on the market. I believe those sold in US have alligator or crocodile straps. It's easy enough to install the strap at their NYC office when they arrive from Switzerland.
     
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  3. lexieb007 Feb 9, 2021

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    Sure. Interesting. So what straps do they use in the EU?

    I mean PP HQ is a mere few KM from France

    Do they seriously think it’s appropriate to use alligator if the EU has them on the endangered list?

    Do Alligators get farmed like crocs for their hide (for example)? Maybe they do and thats ok, just curious if PP have a sustainable wildlife policy on this.....
     
    Edited Feb 9, 2021
  4. Borosilikat Feb 9, 2021

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    I doubt they care very much and they just follow the letter of the law
     
  5. lexieb007 Feb 9, 2021

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    Yes but it's the era of "the responsible corporate" - a company ignores this to its detriment... just my opinion...
     
  6. Larry S Color Commentator for the Hyperbole. Feb 9, 2021

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    They are farmed. I’d be more comfortable with US sourced hide. Questionable practices elsewhere including live skinning, one shudders.
     
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  7. Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Feb 9, 2021

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    Omega does, so I don't see why PP wouldn't. Straps like these are subject to CITES requirements and documentation, so would come from verifiably sustainable sources. They would be farmed hides most likely.

    [​IMG]
     
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  8. lexieb007 Feb 9, 2021

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    ^where does that label say it's sourced/subject to CITES? Or comes from farmed hide?
     
  9. Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Feb 9, 2021

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    It doesn't.
     
  10. gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Feb 9, 2021

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    My guess is that the stamps themselves are Swiss made and that the manufacturer obtained the CITES certificate when the alligator hide was imported into Switzerland.

    Omega would need to provide that certificate from its supplier when the watch is exported.
    gatorcpa
     
  11. Dan S Feb 9, 2021

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    Alligators are definitely farmed in Louisiana. The meat is sold everywhere (to tourists, mostly), and the hide made into wallets, belts, boots, straps, etc. When I lived there I frequently took visitors on swamp tours out of Houma, and the explanation of the alligator farming industry was always a major topic of the tour. It's actually pretty interesting. They harvest eggs out of nests and incubate them at the desired temperature to influence the gender (higher temperature gives more males). Then the young ones are raised in enclosed areas. I also recall going to a big alligator festival during the summer in St. Charles Parish IIRC.

    I don't know about the PP straps.
     
    Edited Feb 9, 2021
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  12. lexieb007 Feb 10, 2021

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    Point I am making is this. We really don't know where the leather is sourced. Or how. Still - In 2021. In the age of accurate digital supply chains. Food is source labeled. Meat free range etc Organic etc. Why not leather? We just continue to have to "guess". We really have zero idea don't we? A ban remains and exists into the EU. And everywhere else is "just ok"???.. And the Swiss are turning a blind eye to this?... when Geneva is like 5km (sometimes less) from the EU border?
     
  13. bradurani Feb 10, 2021

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    I'd be shocked if they were doing anything illegal or distasteful. As many have pointed out, there are alligators farms in the USA that can supply what they need trouble-free.
    Some luxury conglomerates have even purchased their own farms: https://www.oaklins.com/us/en/deals/41537/
    Now the Asian strap sellers on Etsy and eBay... I dont dabble.
     
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  14. gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Feb 10, 2021

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    It is not clear whether your issue is with the watch companies, who presumably are following the law, or with the law itself.

    One would think that a multi-billion dollar business would be smart enough to follow labeling and origin laws regarding lower cost items like this. Too much at stake not to do things right.

    If you are not satisfied with the law, then you need to do what is legal in your jurisdiction to change it.

    The fact is that where I live, there are plenty of wild alligators. On rare occasions they can be dangerous to humans.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.washingtonpost.com/news/animalia/wp/2017/11/03/disney-knew-its-park-was-full-of-alligators-it-caught-hundreds-before-a-boy-was-killed/?outputType=amp

    Florida allows controlled hunting of alligators during certain times of the year. The hunters must comply with CITES laws and can only sell meat and hides to approved processors.

    CITES laws are pretty tough. To the point that many auction houses will remove the leather strap from watches shipped from the EU to USA (or vice-versa) as they cannot prove where a used strap came from.

    Sometimes, you just have to have faith.
    gatorcpa
     
  15. Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Feb 10, 2021

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    This is a confusing thread...

    Where did you get the idea that there is a ban on this hide in the EU? Why would the EU ban this hide?

    The American alligator is not an endangered species - hasn't been for decades. France imports large quantities of this hide as there are many high end strap makers and makers of other leather goods there. APB and Camille Fornet are the two big strap makers that I am aware of, who makes straps for watch brands. The EU imported over 1/2 a million hides in 2017 according to this analysis, again mostly to France:

    https://ec.europa.eu/environment/cites/pdf/EU Wildlife Trade 2017_Analysis of the EU Annual Reports to CITES.pdf

    The strap I showed above is made in France - see origin at the bottom of the label:

    [​IMG]

    And yes, it is fully certified by CITES:

    [​IMG]

    Materials that are regulated by CITES are not necessarily endangered. In the case of American alligator, it is regulated and taken from documented sources to ensure it is what it says it is, instead of being something that actually is endangered.

    I believe you have started this thread on a faulty assumption...
     
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  16. Wryfox Feb 10, 2021

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    The vast majority of 'Alligator' straps are actually South American Caimans, a smaller and very plentiful variety, well suited for small and pliable things like straps and shoes.

    But while we're on the topic, living in Florida has its advantages....13ft finished belly skin from 15+ft Florida Alligator. This size would have been about 1,000lbs. As big as it gets in Florida, and that's plenty big...see comparison chart to humans.
    (Note: live pic is example of equivalent 15+ft size, not of actual alligator used for my skin.)

    The bodies of water in my neighborhood are too small for the big ones, though the adult females come here to lay eggs in privacy away from males that, believe it or not, would eat their eggs. Babies grow to about 6ft before they move on to bigger waters. Bottom photo is a fellow I came across riding my bike around the neighborhood. About 6ft or a little more. Pretty docile, actually, you just shoo them away.....
    20171222_163421.jpg 15+ foot gator.jpg Alligator comparative sizes-page-001.jpg
    LPGA Gator Oct 2018.jpg
     
  17. asrnj77 Feb 10, 2021

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    B1A8F5C8-5EE2-430D-B2F6-4D9910735F20.jpeg
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  18. SpikiSpikester @ ΩF Staff Member Feb 10, 2021

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    There's no problem getting alligator straps in the UK & was no problem before we left the EU. The JLC boutique supplied alligator straps on various watches as standard and as spares, and you can easily buy aftermarket alligator straps from Hirsch agents and so on.

    I'm not sure where the idea comes from that the EU doesn't allow alligator straps. Maybe it's an issue of import restrictions from outside the EU, where chain of origin has to be proved ?
     
  19. pongster Feb 10, 2021

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  20. asrnj77 Feb 10, 2021

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    Yeah I don’t see sturgeon but they do have salmon and not many people have hippo these days
     
    6C1B3322-5635-4286-972B-672A67100646.jpeg