Apple has kept the list of which companies make the parts for its iPad, iPhone, iPod and Mac products something of a secret in the past. On Friday that changed when Apple released its annual supplier responsibility report. As part of that report, Apple released a list of those specific companies that make parts for Apple products for the first time.
The report shows that Apple uses 156 companies for its supply chain. It includes well known organizations like Intel, LG, NEC, NVIDIA, Panasonic, Qualcomm, Samsung, SanDisk, Sharp, Sony, Texas Instruments, Toshiba and Western Digital. According to the report, the list represents 97 percent of "Apple’s procurement expenditures for materials, manufacturing, and assembly of Apple’s products worldwide."
In the supplier responsibility report, Apple goes over how those suppliers handle issues such as worker rights and pay, overall health and safety issues for those workers, the environmental impact of the supplier's plants and more. Apple states that the company conducted a total of 227 audits of its suppliers in 2011 which it says is an 80 percent increase compared to 2010.
The report goes over in detail what kinds of violations have been found in Apple's audits, although the report does not actually name the companies that were found to be in violation of these rules. Apple broke off its relationship with just one supplier of parts in 2011, which the company said was a "repeat offender" of its rules.
In addition to regular audits, Apple says it also made what it called "specialized environmental audits" to address some special issues at 14 unnamed suppliers in China. Apple states, "Our team brought in third-party environmental engineering experts who discovered a number of violations. We have been working with our suppliers to correct these issues, and we will continue to build on this program of specialized environmental audits in the coming year."
In 2010, Apple got a bit of a bloody nose after reports of mass suicides of workers occurred at a Foxconn China plant that was making parts for Apple products.