According to several news sources, the partial shutdown of key Apple manufacturer Catcher Technology due to environmental concerns could lead to supply constraints for the company’s MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lineups.

Financial Times reports:

In an emergency announcement on Sunday night, Taiwan’s Catcher Technology (2474:TAI), one of the world’s biggest makers of metal casings for notebook PCs, said it had been ordered to close part of its plant in China’s Suzhou province by regulators, after local residents complained of bad odours generated by the plant.

If you’ve never heard of Catcher Technology, you’re probably more familiar with their work than you think. The unibody casing of Apple’s current MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lineups is perhaps the main reason Catcher is one of the world’s biggest makers of metal casings for computers. The company expects the shutdown to cut sales by a fifth in October and Catcher’s president Allen Horng had this to say at a press conference on Monday (via WSJ):

“Shipments to our customers will inevitably be affected. We already asked them to make adjustments to their (casings) procurement.”

The analysts are already starting to weigh in, but it’s unclear how much of an impact this will have on current and future notebook supplies. We’re also not sure how this will affect those new refreshed MacBook Pros we told you about.

This isn’t the first time Apple’s partners have run into issues regarding environmental concerns. Today’s report follows accusations of “systemic pollution” in August from a Chinese environmental group over Apple signing deals with known polluters.

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