Apple discloses suppliers for the first time

Jan 13, 2012 By BARBARA ORTUTAY , AP Technology Writer
Apple discloses suppliers for the first time (AP)
This Wednesday, March 9, 2011 file photo shows an Associated Press reporter demonstrating the Apple iPad 2 in San Francisco. Apple Inc. is disclosing the list of suppliers for the iPhone, iPad and other popular gadgets for the first time amid growing criticism of the labor and environmental practices of many of these companies, especially in China. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, FILE)

(AP) -- Apple has disclosed a list of its suppliers for the iPhone, iPad and other popular gadgets for the first time amid growing criticism over labor and environmental practices, especially in China.

The list for years has been strictly and fervently protected. Even a glimpse of an or its components before a public release became a source of intrigue and controversy. Investors have played a guessing game about which contractors would become Apple's next supplier, or who was on the outs.

disclosed its list of its suppliers responsible for 97 percent of its procurement expenditures worldwide. Some examples are ., Broadcom Corp., Amphenol Corp. and Co.

The transparency may be a sign of changes coming to the Cupertino, Calif. company in the post-Steve Jobs era under CEO .

The 2012 "Supplier Responsibility Progress Report" released Friday, documents 229 audits throughout its supply chain last year by Apple Inc. That's up 80 percent from 127 audits in 2010.

The audits found labor, health, health and environmental violations, including instances of underage labor and discrimination based on pregnancy. Apple also outlined its response to each of the violations that were uncovered, which included ending its relationship with repeat offenders and requiring companies to come up with measures to prevent them from occurring again.

The report was issued a day after distraught workers who make Microsoft's Xbox video game consoles at Foxconn Technology Group climbed to the top of a six-story dormitory and threatened to jump to their deaths. No one did, but the incident highlights growing labor unrest in China. Foxconn is a unit of Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. that makes iPads and iPhones for Apple.

There was a rash of suicides at the massive Foxconn plant in 2010 in the city of Shenzhen. About 300,000 people work at the plant and industrial park. Plant managers installed nets to prevent more people from committing suicide by jumping from the roof.

In its report, Apple found that 78 of the company's suppliers complied with antidiscrimination standards it has set for them. But only 61 percent of them had systems in place to prevent discrimination from happening.

Nearly all - 97 percent - prevented underage labor. But only 72 percent had policies in place keep it from happening.

Just 38 percent of the suppliers observed Apple's working-hours policies, and 69 percent followed its code for wages and benefits.

In all, the audits found 74 percent of the suppliers to be in overall compliance with Apple's policies. Examples of violations included testing job candidates for Hepatitis B, conducting pregnancy tests and exceeding weekly limits of 60 working hours. Apple said 109 facilities it audited did not pay proper overtime wages.

In another shift, Apple also joined the Fair Labor Association, a group of companies and universities focused on improving practices. It conducts unannounced, random audits on its members' factories.

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User comments : 10

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Deathclock
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2012
"There was a rash of suicides at the massive Foxconn plant in 2010 in the city of Shenzhen. About 300,000 people work at the plant and industrial park. Plant managers installed nets to prevent more people from committing suicide by jumping from the roof."

Holy shit!
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2012
Sounds like a really good working atmosphere.

There had to be a reason why Apple has nearly 20 percent net profit as a whole (and sometimes as much as 40% on individual products - like the iPad). Anybody who buys their product is certainly not getting his money's worth - only the bragging rights for being an easy con.
epsi00
not rated yet Jan 14, 2012
Apple is simply benefiting from the slavery conditions imposed in factories of its suppliers in China and elsewhere. There is such a thing as guilty by association since in this case Apple is racking billions of dollars of profit part of which should have gone to those factory workers. When you hold that I-x, x being pad, phone or whatever, think of all those workers who committed suicide.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (9) Jan 14, 2012
Apple is simply benefiting from the slavery conditions imposed in factories of its suppliers in China and elsewhere. There is such a thing as guilty by association since in this case Apple is racking billions of dollars of profit part of which should have gone to those factory workers. When you hold that I-x, x being pad, phone or whatever, think of all those workers who committed suicide.


I agree communism/socialism is slavery...
Guy_Underbridge
5 / 5 (3) Jan 14, 2012
- There is such a thing as guilty by association since in this case Apple is racking billions of dollars of profit part of which should have gone to those factory workers.

- I agree communism/socialism is slavery...
Odd comment for an article that demonstrates unbridled capitalism at it finest.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (9) Jan 14, 2012
- There is such a thing as guilty by association since in this case Apple is racking billions of dollars of profit part of which should have gone to those factory workers.

- I agree communism/socialism is slavery...
Odd comment for an article that demonstrates unbridled capitalism at it finest.


China is capitalist? Hmmm....

http://www.merria...pitalism

One can't have their cake and eat it.
Guy_Underbridge
5 / 5 (1) Jan 14, 2012
China is capitalist? Hmmm....
Apple is Chinese? Hmmm...
http://www.apple.com/about/

If 'I' made the cake, I definitely would avoid ingesting it. I'm a lousy cook.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (8) Jan 14, 2012
Apple is Chinese? Hmmm...


Does Foxconn operate in China? I think the article said as much. Is China capitalist? If it is write the story, you'll expose it to the entire world...
epsi00
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 14, 2012
The Chinese did not steal the manufacturing jobs from the US, US corporations voluntarily outsourced those jobs to China for no other purpose than to make more profits. So the blame should rest on the shoulders of those corporations and the many administrations, democrat and republican, that went along.
And yes, China is practicing 19th century British capitalism.
350
5 / 5 (1) Jan 14, 2012
Holy crap modern mystic, you have like 10 accounts!... Why rate yourself a 1 from them all?...