Over the past few years Apple has been turning out hot products at a consistent rate and has grown into a massive corporate empire. But behind the scenes at Apple, specifically their suppliers, things are not always as glamorous as one might expect.
A report from The Strait Times, a Singapore based newspaper, states that for the first time that Apple has admitted the production methods used to create its products have had adverse health affects on the employees assembling them. The Strait Times cites the Apple Supplier Responsibility 2011 Responsibility Report:
The California-based maker of iPods, iPhones and iPads acknowledged for the first time in the Apple Supplier Responsibility 2011 Progress Report on Tuesday that 137 workers at the Suzhou facility of Wintek, one of Apple's touch screen suppliers, had suffered adverse health effects following exposure to n-hexane, a chemical in cleaning agents used in some manufacturing processes.
The Straight Times does sensationalize the issue calling it a "scandal" but they do state that Apple shut down the assembly line until proper ventilation could be put in place. Currently the workers are demanding an apology from Apple over the incident, which seems a bit strange because Apple does not own the assembly plant but contracts it to create its products.
All 137 employees affected were treated and most have returned to work. There were no fatalities as a result of the exposure.