Apple yesterday issued its seventh yearly Supplier Responsibility Report, which provides details about the company's audits of working conditions at its manufacturing partners' factories. According to the report, Apple severed ties with Guangdong Real Faith Pingzhou Electronics, a circuit board manufacturer, after it discovered 74 underage labor violations at the the manufacturer's facilities.
Apple conducted an additional 338 audits of factories throughout the company's supply chain, an increase of 72 percent from the number of audits in 2011. According to the report, the company achieved compliance with a maximum 60-hour workweek among 92 percent of its suppliers, and punished a number of manufacturers for failing to provide proper compensation for overtime. Apple is now also providing weekly updates about the status of more than 1 million its website.
After last year's report was released China Labor Watch, a watchdog company that keeps its eye on a number of electronic parts suppliers, admitted that Apple is among the best at keeping track of labor concerns. However, they criticized them for not doing enough.
Apple rival Samsung has come under fire from China Labor Watch several times in the last year for underage workers. Most recently, in December 2012, the watchdog group's audit dredged up overtime abuses and fines for being sick, amongst other things – but Samsung claimed that not a single example of child labor was uncovered.