The Victorinox Cadet Alox is a very good choice if you are looking for a multitool that is highly durable and functional. At $35, it is a costly piece of equipment but is worth it if you are looking for a highly quality tool made from materials that are easily recyclable. The energy that they power their factories with is hydroelectric which is more sustainable than fossil fuels, but can also cause environmental damage affecting biodiversity, habitats, etc. which Victorinox fails to address. They have worked hard to reduce their environmental footprint by updating their machinery to utilize less water and heating oil, but there is still a high demand for energy. Many of their industrial wastes are recycled and the packaging is minimal and made of recycled cardboard. Overall, the Victorinox Cadet Alox is a great choice for consumers that want a durable multitool that is very practical and sustainable.
Victorinox uses their own proprietary blend of stainless steel that is tough, corrosion resistant, and easy to sharpen. They claim that 95% of the steel they source is recycled. The alloy has 15% chromium which makes the steel corrosion resistant, but can cause environmental damage when it contaminates groundwater. The production of recycled steel utilizes electric arc furnaces to melt scrap steel and uses significantly less energy than creating new steel.
The scales of this knife are made of an aluminum alloy which undergoes anodic oxidation which helps to create a protective layer. This creates a lightweight and functional handle that is made of a highly recyclable metal. Recycled aluminum uses on 5% of the energy needed to create brand new material. It is unclear how much recycled material Victorinox has in their handles.
45,000 swiss army knives are made daily at their headquarters in Ibach, Switzerland and source their steel close by from Germany and France. A majority of the steel they source is recycled and is pressed out by machinery into the blades and tools in their products. The blades are then heat treated in an industrial furnace and hand sharpened by a Victorinox employee. Most of their products are mass produced by optimized machines using industrial techniques which are powered by multiple hydroelectric plants nearby. They have also reduced their heating oil usage by recovering waste heat from their production sites and have been able to provide heat to 75% of their headquarters and 22 apartments nearby. Their heating oil usage is now only used in emergencies and dropped from 30,000 liters in 2016 to 2,500 liters today. It is unclear how much water Victorinox uses but they claim that they have been able to reduce 1/2 the amount of fresh water needed for their cleaning facilities. Some CFCs are still used in their production but have reduced from 108,000 kg to 236kg. Victorinox has tried to adopt more of a circular model recycling 55% of their industrial waste as well as using minimal recycled (90%) packaging.
Victorinox is a swiss based company founded in 1884 best known for their variety of pocket knives and multi tools such as the world famous “Swiss Army Knife”. This brand is an independent family company with 90% of the company owned by Victorinox AG and the other 10% owned by a non-profit foundation. They makes a variety of products that are available worldwide which are known for their quality and durability. Many of their products however utilize a plastic body that gives the swiss army knife its classic red appearance. This is of less concern however as this product is meant to last a lifetime given that you don’t lose it. The global nature of their company is not really addressed and there may be some concerns with high emissions from transportation of their products.