Being able to accurately track products through the supply chain is becoming more important than ever, I think there are many reasons for this, with a large drive coming from consumers who want better visibility as to where products have come from. Therefore businesses must find efficient methods for doing this.
There are various acronyms for this; GS1 global standards / GTIN or EDI and focuses on using barcodes which are machine readable character strings which can be created using linear symbology, are typically between 30-40 characters or could be a matrix code of up to 2000 characters. These symbologies could be compared to a foreign language with syntax and construction rules and industry standard defined codes are EAN or UPC.
Serial shipping container code (SSCC)
This is the mandatory element of the GS1 Logistics label which is the identification key for an item which is to be transported or stored through the supply chain. The SSCC can be assigned to any unit or combination of units which need to be managed for the lifetime of the journey through the supply chain. The serial number aspect provides virtually unlimited number capacity. The SSCC uniquely identifies logistics units for tracking and identification and they can be used at any stage of the supply chain, integrating with all GS1 supply chain processes and are key for all business to business tracking.
GTIN – Global Trade Item Number
All products have to have a different GTIN; this includes products in different colours, sizes and types with each level of packaging also requiring a different GTIN.
|A new GTIN is required for:||A new GTIN is not required for:|
|New product||Minor product changes eg: ingredient change|
New product variant
|Undeclared weight change|
|Major product description change||Competition offer|
|Declared contents change||Money off next purchase|
Free gift attached
|Free gift inside|
|New packaging type||Change of label / packaging artwork|
GS1 Logistics Label
“Provides a standard means of presenting information at the level of individual transport units, and uses bar codes and the application identifier standards to represent both GTIN’s and extra information.”
This enables 1 label for use by suppliers, distributors and customers throughout the supply chain, which improves control procedures throughout the warehousing and distribution process. This provides a consistent link with electronic data interchange minimising costs.