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GS1 US, GS1 Canada and companies within the North American consumer packaged goods, fresh foods, grocery and foodservice industries have come together to develop guidance for industry-wide adoption of a single standard for case labeling information for finished products. The labeling system aims to enhance business efficiencies and improve product traceability along the supply chain.
The result of this collaborative process is the publication of the “North American Industry Guidance for Standard Case Code Labeling for Extended Product Attributes.” The voluntary implementation of this guidance for products in the food industry enables trading partners to share critical dynamic product information about their food products, such as Batch and Lot Numbers, “Best by” and “Use by” dates, among others.
“Industry manufacturers and retailers came together to define standardized guidance for the application of case-level GS1-128 barcodes that enables support for current and future supply chain practices including product traceability,” said Greg Buckley, senior director, customer supply chain and logistics at PepsiCo Inc. “These GS1-128 standards will drive efficiency and new capability across our supply chain and allow us to use one common barcode on product that is produced for multiple channels of trade.”
The document outlines basic definitions needed to understand and implement standardized product case labeling, along with specific guidelines for the use of human readable information as well as the GS1-128 barcode used to capture multiple product attributes in one scan. Additionally, it explains how the use of the GS1-128 barcode can streamline business processes and improve product traceability and food safety in the supply chain. Industry stakeholders will also find guidance for category-specific requirements and technical considerations for the application of case labels, including printing specifications and symbol placement on cases.
“Consistent with our mission, GS1 US and GS1 Canada helped bring the food industry together to find a standards-based solution to an industry challenge by considering common business practices and various supply chain processes,” said Mary Wilson, VP of Standards Management, GS1 US.
“This document has far-reaching benefits for food manufacturers, retailers and distributors from Canada and the United States,” said Mike Sadiwnyk, SVP, global relations and chief standards officer, GS1 Canada. “It represents North American industries coming together to define a foundation for the deployment of the new business-to-business applications that are needed to power more efficient and visible supply chains.”
As industry practices evolve, GS1 US and GS1 Canada will continue to engage the community to ensure that updates to the document will reflect process changes, regulatory requirements and technological developments taking place in industry.
GS1 US, a member of GS1, is an information standards organization that brings industry communities together to solve supply-chain problems through the adoption and implementation of GS1 standards. More than 200,000 businesses in 25 industries rely on GS1 US for trading-partner collaboration and for maximizing the cost effectiveness, speed, visibility, security and sustainability of their business processes.