Products made to have a positive impact. On the world and the people who make them.

Our suppliers employ millions of people around the world. The decisions we make can have a big impact on their lives and their communities. We have a great responsibility to protect the rights of all the people in our supply chain and to do everything we can to preserve our planet’s fragile environment. That’s why we obsess over every detail of how we build our products. And it’s why we invest in education and training to provide opportunities and tools to help our suppliers’ employees today and in the future.

Download the 2017 Progress Report (PDF)

Improving Suppliers

We’re helping suppliers meet the highest standards in the industry. Ours.

We have a strict Code of Conduct that requires our suppliers to adhere to high standards for safe working conditions, fair treatment of workers and environmentally safe manufacturing. Every year, we strengthen these standards in a continuing effort to raise the bar. By forming close partnerships, we help our suppliers develop the knowledge and skills they need to operate responsibly. In 2016, even as we raised our benchmarks and added new suppliers to our programme, our collaboration resulted in higher scores across the board.

Year-over-year progress through partnership.

We conducted 705 supplier assessments in 2016. Almost 30 per cent of these were first-time assessments for suppliers new to the programme. By working closely with our suppliers, we were able to increase the number of high-performing supplier sites by 59 per cent and decrease the number of low-performing supplier sites by 31 per cent.

2015

574
Scored Assessments

  • 209 High Performers (90–100)
  • 330 Medium Performers (60–89)
  • 35 Low Performers (≤59)

2016

705
Scored Assessments

  • 332 High Performers (90–100)
  • 349 Medium Performers (60–89)
  • 24 Low Performers (≤59)

How we measure our progress.

In order to know whether our suppliers are progressing, we conduct regular assessments. We assess suppliers in three main categories: labour and human rights, environmental responsibility, and health and safety. Each category is scored on a 100-point scale based on more than 500 data points that correspond to our Code of Conduct. We expect our suppliers to show steady improvement and we work with them to achieve this through education, training tools and support.

Labour and Human Rights

85
Average Assessment Score

compliance: 85 points, violations: 15 points.

Environment

87
Average Assessment Score

compliance: 87 points, violations: 13 points.

Health and Safety

87
Average Assessment Score

compliance: 87 points, violations: 13 points.
  • Compliance
  • Non-compliance

Scores issued on a 100-point scale in 2016

We’re leading the way on the environment and helping our partners keep pace.

Throughout our supply chain we’re driving programmes that minimise carbon emissions, eliminate landfill waste, conserve water and replace unsafe chemicals. We’re also helping our suppliers reduce the amount of energy they use and make the switch to renewable energy. We’re advancing renewable energy usage by working with suppliers to create 4 gigawatts of renewable energy around the world by 2020 that will help power their facilities. In 2016, we tripled the number of supplier sites participating in our energy efficiency programme, resulting in the reduction of more than 150,000 metric tons of carbon emissions. A number of large suppliers have already committed to power all Apple manufacturing with renewable energy by the end of 2018. These commitments will reduce carbon emissions by 7,000,000 metric tons per year, the equivalent of removing 1,500,000 cars from the road for a year. We’re even taking responsibility for our paper supply chain: more than 99 per cent of the paper used in our packaging comes from either recycled wood fibre or sustainably managed forests and controlled wood sources.

Case Study

Creating a zero-waste manufacturing facility.

In 2015, we started a zero-waste programme for our final assembly suppliers. One of the participants was Tech-Com in Shanghai. Working closely with the facility, we discovered that more than 20 per cent of the waste they produced was being incinerated or going to landfill. We partnered with our supplier and its local recycling facility to develop a better process for separating and recycling waste. As a result, Tech-Com is now able to recycle all of its waste rather than sending it to a landfill or an incinerator. Tech-Com also developed a new process for managing food waste, allowing them to send it to a local composter instead of a landfill. They then used what they had learnt to develop a process for their own suppliers that helped their suppliers collect and reuse packaging material. Since the programme started, Tech-Com has diverted more than 10,000 metric tons of waste from landfill, earning the company a well-deserved UL Zero Waste to Landfill validation in 2016.

Educating and Empowering Workers

We’re investing in people.

A more educated workforce is a more empowered workforce. In 2016, we partnered with our suppliers to train more than 2.4 million workers on their rights as employees. We’re also helping build stronger futures by offering the people who work in our supply chain a wide variety of educational and training programmes. These include the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s or associate’s degree, attend vocational training, and take classes in language, arts, finance and basic life skills.

2.4M+ trained on their employment rights in 2016
689K+ participated in career growth and life skills training in 2016
2.1M+ Supplier Employee Education and Development students to date

Case Study

Turning education into opportunity.

Liu Jiang Hong is an experienced manager at Foxconn with two university degrees. It’s a future she never imagined when she started on the assembly line as a technician.

One afternoon she was walking down a hallway at Foxconn when she spotted a poster for the Supplier Employee Education and Development (SEED) programme. Jiang Hong had always wanted to go to university, but her family’s circumstances had made that impossible. SEED allowed her to pursue a degree and still be able to work to support her family. She started with an associate’s degree and received her bachelor’s degree a few years later.

Her persistence and determination were rewarded. Over the years, Jiang Hong moved up the ranks at Foxconn, receiving multiple promotions from her first technician job to manager of her own team.

“I love what I do. Apple’s education programme really helped me a lot in my career development. My improvement in English also enabled me to communicate with clients and manage projects independently. I wouldn’t have the career I have now without SEED.”

Responsible Sourcing

Responsible sourcing that goes well beneath the surface.

Our commitment to people and the planet doesn’t stop at manufacturing. In 2010, we were one of the first companies to map our supply chain from manufacturing to the smelter level for tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold (3TG). In 2016, we completed our supply-chain mapping for cobalt. We continue to publish a list of our 3TG smelters and this year the list also includes our cobalt suppliers. For the second year in a row, 100 per cent of our identified 3TG smelters and refiners are participating in independent third-party audits. And 100 per cent of our cobalt smelter and refiner partners are participating in third-party audits. In 2016, we removed 22 smelters from our supply chain. We will continue to remove those who are unable or ultimately unwilling to comply with our high standards. Every year we deepen our influence throughout our supply chain as we push for higher social and environmental standards.

100% smelters/refiners participating in third-party assessments (tin, tantalum, tungsten, gold, cobalt)

Apple is a leader in addressing the challenges of child labour in artisanal mining in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. We are proud to partner with them to provide essential health and safety training, to improve livelihoods by connecting workers to fair-market sales and to develop systems to ensure children stay in school.

Mark Visopresident and CEO of Pact

Reports

2017 Report Highlights

98% compliance with 60-hour workweek standard
2.4M+ workers trained on their rights in 2016, 11.7M+ workers trained on their rights since 2008
14.4B+ litres of water saved in 2016, 30B+ litres of water saved since 2013
100% supply chain mapping completed for tin, tantalum, tungsten, gold and cobalt
100% third-party audit participation for tin, tantalum, tungsten, gold and cobalt smelter/refiner partners
US$2.6M reimbursed to over 1,000 people for overcharged recruitment fees in 2016, amounting to US$28.4M to over 34,000 people since 2008
2.1M+ Supplier Employee Education and Development (SEED) students since inception (2008)
200K+ metric tons of waste diverted from landfill in 2016
#1 ranking for third year in a row by Corporate Information Transparency Index (CITI)

Learn more about our progress.

Our 11th annual Supplier Responsibility Progress Report is a comprehensive overview of everything we’re doing to ensure that our products are manufactured with the highest level of integrity. It highlights our continued efforts to improve working conditions at our supplier partners’ facilities, safeguard the environment, enhance the lives of workers and uphold our standards for responsible sourcing.