“In an annual report on labor and environmental practices in its supply chain, Apple said it is making progress eliminating so-called conflict minerals,” Daisuke Wakabayashi reports for The Wall Street Journal.
“Apple said it had identified 225 smelters in its supply chain that handle gold, tantalum, tin or tungsten. Sales of those four minerals have been used to fund armed conflicts in the Democratic Republic of Congo; in Asia, they are sometimes extracted by children or rogue miners in dangerous conditions,” Wakabayashi reports. “Apple said 135 of those smelters were audited last year to verify that they do not use materials that fund armed groups; that’s more than double the 57 smelters audited in 2013. The company said 64 other smelters in its supply chain have agreed to participate or are currently participating in an audit, while 26 new smelters have not agreed to participate yet.”
“Apple first identified 186 smelters used by its suppliers in 2013. By publicly identifying its smelters and requiring that the smelters agree to be audited by the end of 2014, Apple said it was hoping to use only conflict-free minerals,” Wakabayashi reports. “Apple said all but four agreed to be audited. The company said it notified the four who refused to be audited that they would be eliminated from its supply chain.”
Read more in the full article here.
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Apple confirms suppliers use conflict-free minerals – February 13, 2014