The Ten Francs coin is a denomination of the Swiss Franc. Given that Switzerland has four official languages, the Franc has three different names: Franken in German, franc in French and Romansh, and franco in Italian. Initially when federal Swiss coinage was introduced in 1850, all "francs" (including the half franc) were full-bodied silver, while the centimes were either billon (low-grade silver) or base metal.
The normal circulating 5 FR denomination was supplemented by circulating commemorative one-year type 5 Franc coins in silver and copper-nickel.
In 1999, Swissimint changed the concept and started striking non-circulating commemoratives for collectors only, which were bimetallic 5 Francs at first. After only six coins were issued in the first five years, this format was discontinued. Further non-circulating bimetallic coins are now denominated as 10 Francs, such as those listed below.
The 10 Francs are bimetallic and have the same dimensions as the bimetallic 5 Francs, but their colours are reversed: with an Aluminium Bronze outer ring (92% copper, 6% Aluminium, 2% Nickel) and a copper-nickel inner circle (75% copper, 25% nickel). They are issued in topical series, celebrating various aspects of Swiss heritage or nature.
The 2015 Ten Francs collector coin highlights the Return from the Alps tradition. It is part of the second series about Swiss customs (German: Schweizer Bräuche; French: Coutumes suisses); the first series was in the 5 Francs denomination.
The obverse of the coin is common with the other commemorative 10 Francs and is designed by Roland Hirter; the reverse is designed by Réhane Favereau.
The "Almabtrieb" (in Switzerland: Alpabzug, Alpabfahrt, or in French speaking Switzerland: Désalpes; German language literally: drive from the mountain pasture) is an annual event in the alpine regions in Europe, referring to a cattle drive that takes place in late September or early October. During summer, all over the alpine regions cattle herds feed on alpine pastures (Almen in Austria or Germany, Alpen in Switzerland) high up in the mountains, a practice known as transhumance. In numbers, these amount to about 500,000 in Austria, 380,000 in Switzerland, and 50,000 in Germany.
While there is often some movement of cattle between the Almen (sing.: Alm), or Alpen (sing.: Alp) respectively, during the summer, there is usually one concerted cattle drive in the autumn to bring the cattle to their barns down in the valley. If there were no accidents on the Alm during the summer, in many areas the cattle are decorated elaborately, and the cattle drive is celebrated with music, feasts and dance events in the towns and villages. Upon arrival in the valley, joint herds from multiple farmers are sorted in the Viehscheid, and each animal is returned to its owner.
Bimetallic 10 Franc coins are legal tender but are issued in small quantities for collectors only and do not circulate.