UPC (Universal Product Code)

UPC (Universal Product Code) – Product Information Identifier In A global Business Routing

UPC (Universal Product Code) is a twelve-digit barcode printed on retail products packaging (grocery, books, magazines, cosmetics, household goods etc.) for identifying a particular merchandise item. UPC (Universal Product Code) is a type of unique code that consists of two sectors – a machine-readable barcode (series of black bars that are unique for this particular item) and 12-digit number that is also unique.

The main purpose of using UPC (Universal Product Code) is to automatically identify product, its features (like brand, size and color), quantity sold, item traffic details, tracking and managing inventory and warehousing etc. Everyone can see a Universal Product Code scanned at supermarket checkout desks every day.

UPC (Universal Product Code) was introduced by IBM in 1973 as an item code for electronic sale applications. Later in 1976 it was supplanted by an EAN code (European Article Numbering).

To become a part of the system and obtain a UPC code for a product, a company should apply GS1 US that manages Universal Product Code assigning in the USA. GS1 assigns each member a 6-digit manufacturer ID number. It becomes the first six digits in the Universal Product Code on all the company’s products and identifies the manufacturer of the items with these six digits on a barcode.

Universal Product Code has lots of advantages both for manufacturers, sellers and consumers. It makes possible immediately identify a product and get all information about it. So UPC improves speed, accuracy, productiveness and effectiveness. It eliminates manual interruption and makes merchandise processes go faster.

Universal Product Code has a great influence on inventory management. It helps to track product automatically and therefore more accurately, manage product quantity on the shelves, track items through production and retail up to consumers’ homes.

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