1.The GS1 identification system provides the world a globally unique and unambiguous identification system through the GS1 Identification Keys. All GS1 standards shall incorporate at least one of the GS1 Identification Keys as mandatory identifiers.
The GS1 Identification Keys are:
• Global Trade Item Number (GTIN)
• Global Location Number (GLN)
• Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC)
• Global Coupon Number (GCN)
• Global Returnable Asset Identifier (GRAI)
• Global Individual Asset Identifier (GIAI)
• Global Service Relation Number (GSRN)
• Global Document Type Identifier (GDTI)
• Global Shipment Identification Number (GSIN)
• Global Identification Number for Consignment (GINC)
Only the three most widely used GS1 Identification Keys are explained in any detail in here namely: Global Trade Item Number, Serial Shipping Container Code and Global Location Number.
1.1,Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) The GTIN is a number used for the unique identification of trade items world-wide.
Note: A trade item is any item (product or service) upon which there is a need to retrieve pre-defined information and that may be priced, ordered or invoiced for trade between participants at any point in any supply chain. The identification and symbol marking of trade items enables the automation of the retail point-of-sale (through price look up files), of products receiving, inventory management, automatic re-ordering, sales analysis, and a wide range of other business applications.
Examples: A can of paint sold to a final consumer, a box of 6 cans of paint, a case containing 24 boxes of one kilo of lawn fertiliser, a multi-pack consisting of one shampoo and one conditioner.
1.2,Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC) The SSCC (Serial Shipping Container Code) is a number, which is used for the unique identification of logistic (transport and/or storage) units.
Note: A Logistic Unit is an item of any composition established for transport and/or storage which needs to be managed throughout the supply chain.
SSCC can be encoded in a GS1-128 bar code. Scanning the SSCC marked on each Logistic Unit allows the physical movement of units to be individually tracked and traced by providing a link between the physical movement of items and the associated information flow. It also provides the opportunity to implement a wide range of applications such as cross docking, shipment routing, automated receiving, etc.
Examples: A box containing 12 skirts and 20 jackets in various sizes and colours is a Logistic Unit as is a pallet of 40 cases each containing 12 cans of paint.
1.3, Global Location Number (GLN) The GLN is a number used to identify any location that needs to be uniquely identified for use in the supply chain. The use of location numbers is a pre-requisite for efficient eCom.
Note: The GLN is used to identify physical locations or parties. The key is comprised of a GS1 Company Prefix, Location Reference, and Check digit.
2. Bar Code Symbologies Five bar code symbologies are very widely used in the GS1 System:
• GS1 DataMatrix
• GS1 DataBar
• GS1 QR Code
The General Retail Consumer Trade Item must carry a bar code from the EAN/UPC Symbology family and in limited circumstances a symbol from the GS1 DataBar Retail POS Family.
In other applications, such as back-door receiving or in warehouses any of the three different symbologies can be used, EAN/UPC, ITF-14 GS1 DataBar or GS1-128.
GS1 DataBar -- By the target date of 2014, GS1 DataBar standards including attribute information (using AI’s) can be used by all trading partners in an open environment.
GS1 DataMatrix -- which can encode all GS1 Application Identifiers and is considered key to emerging usage of GS1 Standards in Healthcare Supply Chains.
GS1 QR Code, is a subset of ISO/IEC 18004 QR Code 2005. QR Code 2005 supports GS1 System data structures, including Function 1 Symbol Character. GS1 QR Code is approved to obtain Extended Packaging.
The EAN and UPC symbols can be read omnidirectionally. They must be used for all items that are scanned at the Pointof-Sale and may be used on other trade items.
The use of the ITF-14 (Interleaved 2 of 5) Symbology is restricted to the bar coding of identification numbers on trade items NOT passing through retail checkouts. This symbology is better suited for direct printing onto corrugated fibreboard.
The GS1-128 Symbology is a variant of Code 128 Symbology. Its use is exclusively licensed to GS1. It is not intended to be read on items passing through retail checkouts. GS1-128 can encode the GTIN and additional data using the GS1 Application Identifiers.
2.4. GS1 DataBar
GS1 DataBar is a family of linear symbologies. Its use is exclusively licensed to GS1, GS1 DataBar standards are available for bilateral agreement between trading partners for all trade items. The specific focus is on Fresh Products scanned at POS.
2.5. GS1 DataMatrix
GS1 DataMatrix is a variant of Data Matrix ISO version ECC 200. The Function 1 Symbol Character in the first position ensures GS1 System compatibility. GS1 DataMatrix can encode the GTIN and additional data using the GS1 Application Identifiers. It is currently being implemented for the bar coding a GTIN (and additional data) on small medical / surgical instruments and healthcare items.
2.6. GS1 QR Code
GS1 QR Code is a subset of ISO/IEC QR code 2005 that is a matrix symbolgy. GS1 QR Code can only encode Extended Packaging limited to use AI(8200) in association with mandatory GTIN-8, GTIN-12, or GTIN-13.