Tim Cook led off his appearance at a Goldman Sachs conference today with a stirring defence of his company’s efforts to curb unsafe and unfair labour conditions in its supply chain. According to Cook, Apple’s not just good at keeping its suppliers in line; it’s the best. But is it good enough?
Cook’s comments came during a long rundown of the efforts Apple has made along these lines; educating workers, ensuring safe conditions, deterring underage labour. He’s pretty proud of the company’s record:
I would tell you that no one in our industry is doing more to improve working conditions than Apple. We are constantly audition facilities, going deep into the supply chain, looking for problems, finding problems and fixing problems. And we report everything, because we believe that transparency is so very important in this area.
And to be honest, that’s very probably true, although not necessarily because Apple’s the most altruistic OEM in the land. It does, though, have the highest profile, and Foxconn — one of its most prominent suppliers — has had a seemingly disproportionate number of recent tragedies.