What is a UPC Code?

You know how every time you go to the grocery store, the clerk has to scan those little black lines into his computer before you can pay? Well those little black lines, or the UPC code, plays a vital role in today’s world.

Barcode LabelsAlmost every product on the market today now has some form of a Universal Product Code (UPC) or Barcode symbology somewhere on the product. The reason for this being, that UPC codes can do more than simply tell you how much your pack of gum will cost. The largest UPC codes can contain up to 1,000 characters of information, that can include company, product, country of origin and more.

A key function of UPC codes is also for inventory purposes. If an entire store for example, has UPC codes on all of their products, then without having a clerk manually go around the store and take inventory, instead the computer system will automatically manage your stock or inventory every time a UPC code is scanned.

UPC codes come in a variety of forms, they are all similar in a few ways: they are all read by machines, or barcode scanners. Also, all barcodes do the same job; the only real differences in forms is usually associated with the amount of information a UPC or barcode label needs to hold.

Although technically all that is required to create a UPC code is a barcode software, however, in order for your UPC code to become legitimate and legal in our market today, you have to have a UPC code approved by GS1 US, the UPC regulator.

The reason behind a universal UPC group is simple. If we have an international system that can be used anywhere, then products across the global market can be bought and sold regardless of currency, language, culture differences etc

Marking your products with EAN/UPC barcodes ensures their acceptance at retail point-of-sale terminals on a worldwide basis, speeds data collection, and improves inventory data for retailers by eliminating errors. The improved inventory data drives more efficient operations for trading partners throughout the supply chain.

In order to create a UPC code for your products or company’s products, please visit our article on “How To Create a UPC Code” under our how to information section.

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  1. Pingback: Food & Beverage Labels

  2. Pete Hernandez

    Does a company keep barcodes for items sold and is there anything else that I can use as proof of purchase?

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