Apple publishes supplier list, auditing factory conditions

The normally secretive Apple has published its supplier list worldwide -- or at least 97 percent of the companies it has contracted in 2011.

In an unprecedented move -- at least for Apple -- the iPhone maker has released an official list of the companies it has contracts worldwide.

Specifically, this list pertains to its supply chain, which is included in Apple's Supplier Responsibility 2012 Progress Report.

The list of material providers and manufacturers refers to companies hired by Apple in 2011. There are certainly some familiar and expected businesses included on the sheet, such as Intel, Sony, and Texas Instruments.

There might be some changes to the list in 2012. For example, rumors are already swirling about what company will be making the iPad 3's display, and supposedly it's not Sharp.

Additionally, it's critical to point out that this list only accounts for roughly "97 percent of what Apple pays to suppliers to manufacture our products." That means that there are some omissions to this list -- most notably Foxconn after a string of tragedies that have embarrassed Apple.

(UPDATE: Foxconn is listed on the document. Thanks to readers for pointing this out!)

In regards to those events as well as others at factories Apple has done business with, Apple offered the following defense in the report:

Our audits have always checked for compliance with environmental standards. In 2011, in addition to our standard audits, we launched a specialized auditing program to address environmental concerns about certain suppliers in China. Third-party environmental engineering experts worked with our team to conduct detailed audits at 14 facilities. We uncovered some violations and worked with our suppliers to correct the issues. We will expand our environmental auditing program in the coming year.

Apple has also offered details about audits along its supply chain, a zero-tolerance policy for underage labor, and continuing education opportunities at supplier facilities.

If you're curious as to which companies that Apple enlists for materials and manufacturing worldwide, click on the screenshots below: