Apple watches for conflict metal in supply chain

Feb 13, 2014
This picture taken on December 22, 2013 shows the Apple logo outside the store in Beijing

Apple on Thursday said it has verified that an essential metal used in its mobile devices is not coming from sources that help finance violent groups in Africa.

The California-based maker of iPhones, iPads, iPods, and Macintosh computers said it confirmed in January that smelters producing tantalum used in its devices were "conflict-free" by third-party auditors.

"We will continue to require all suppliers to use only verified tantalum sources," Apple said in a routinely issued Supplier Responsibility Report.

"We know supply chains fluctuate, and we'll maintain ongoing monitoring of our suppliers' smelters."

Mines producing tantalum, gold, tungsten and other minerals needed to make Internet Age are seen as sources of funding for fighting by armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Greenpeace praised Apple's efforts to shine light on its suppliers, calling it a hallmark of the California-based company's chief executive Tim Cook.

"Apple has flexed its muscles in the past to push suppliers to remove hazardous substances from products and provide more renewable energy for data centers, and it is proving the same model can work to reduce the use of conflict minerals," Greenpeace energy campaigner Tom Dowdall said in a release.

"Samsung and other consumer electronics companies should follow Apple's example and map its suppliers, so the industry can exert its collective influence to build devices that are better for people and the planet."

The report also indicated that suppliers were pretty much staying in line when it came to Apple rules regarding not abusing workers.

Apple suppliers averaged 95 percent compliance with an Apple edict that work weeks not exceed 60 hours, according to the report.

Apple also said it is "investing heavily" in education programs to help workers learn new skills and better understand their rights.

Explore further: Intel says its processors are now 'conflict-free'

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Intel says its processors are now 'conflict-free'

Jan 07, 2014

Intel Corp., the world's largest maker of computer processors, says its processors are now free of minerals from mines held by armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Apple discloses names of suppliers

Jan 18, 2012

Apple Inc., which has been criticized for allowing harsh work conditions at some of its China-based suppliers, has for the first time disclosed the names of all of its suppliers and manufacturing partners.

Apple mulling move into mobile payments

Jan 25, 2014

Apple is considering launching a mobile-payments service for its iPhone and iPad, which would compete with major players such as PayPal, The Wall Street Journal said Friday.

Intel, Apple praised for clean mineral efforts

Aug 16, 2012

(AP) — Apple, Hewlett-Packard and Intel have become "pioneers of progress" through their efforts to avoid purchasing minerals that fund armed groups in Central Africa, an advocacy group said Thursday.

Recommended for you

Oregon sues Oracle over failed health care website

4 hours ago

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum says she's filed a lawsuit against Oracle Corp. and several of its executives over the technology company's role in the state's troubled health insurance exchange.

Google buys product design firm Gecko

4 hours ago

Google on Friday confirmed that it bought Gecko Design to bolster its lab devoted to technology-advancing projects such as self-driving cars and Internet-linked Glass eyewear.

Ticketfly buying WillCall for on-premise data

Aug 21, 2014

Ticketfly Inc., a San Francisco-based technology company among several posing a challenge to Ticketmaster, is acquiring WillCall Inc., a crosstown rival that turns your smartphone into a mobile wallet at live events.

HP revenue inches up after years of decline

Aug 20, 2014

Hewlett-Packard on Wednesday reported that its quarterly revenue rose for the first time in three years, nudged by improved computer sales everywhere except Russia and China.

Restaurants experimenting with pay-in-advance tickets

Aug 20, 2014

With restaurant patrons increasingly jumping on the Internet to make reservations, some high-end eateries here and across the country are adding a new tech wrinkle: having their clientele pay for their meal in advance using ...

User comments : 0