GS1 Standards in Retail

GS1 Standards in Retail

Providing the Foundation for Efficient Supply Chain Management

See how Source-to-Source tagging is making true inventory visibility possible

For more than 40 years, the GS1 System of global supply chain standards have revolutionized efficiency, accuracy, and cost-effectiveness in a broad range of industries—including the apparel and general merchandise industry. GS1 Standards, like identification numbers, provide a “common language” that allows companies and their trading partners to identify items at any point along the supply chain.

GS1 Standards provide unique identification of items and products that provide the link between the item and the information pertaining to it. Think of GS1 Standards as the DNA of an item or product moving through the supply chain. GS1 Standards include:

  • Global Trade Item Numbers® (GTINs®) – Identify products, inner packs, cases, and pallets. GTINs ensure worldwide unique product identification.
  • Global Location Numbers (GLNs) – Identify locations (e.g., such as place of delivery, point of storage, store location etc.) and can be used as a reference to retrieve information from databases
  • Serial Shipping Container Codes (SSCCs) – Identify logistics units, such as cases, cartons, pallets, or air cargo containers of trade items. SSCCs assist with package tracking during all phases of delivery.
  • Electronic Product Codes (EPCs) – The “common language” based on GS1 Standards that allows GTINs, GLNs, and SSCCs to be carried on a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tag, and is compatible with ERP, inventory management, point-of-sale and other enterprise systems. EPC-enabled item level RFID provides product availability and location information. To view up-to-date EPCglobal standards, visit the EPCglobal Inc Standards website.

For a complete list of GS1 Standards, see our Standards Library.

GS1 System Data Carriers

GS1 System Data Carriers enable companies to capture standardized data–such as a specific item in the supply chain–using barcodes and/or EPC-enabled RFID tags.

To encourage standardization in the apparel and general merchandise industry supply chain and help apparel and general merchandise companies implement the right technology, the right way, to achieve their business goals, GS1 US has created the EPC Item Level Readiness Program.