GS1 Databar

By now most of the retailers are aware of the term GS1 DataBar. However, not everyone is ready to implement this technology.

What is GS1 DataBar? According to, GS1 DataBar is a symbology where the symbols can carry more information and identify small items than the current EAN/UPC bar code. GS1 DataBar enables GTIN identification for fresh variable measure and hard-to-mark products like loose produce, jewelry and cosmetics. Additionally, GS1 DataBar can carry GS1 Application Identifiers such as serial numbers, lot numbers and expiration dates, creating solutions to support product authentication and traceability for fresh food products and couponing.

GS1 DataBar is available on many products with the specific focus on fresh products scanned at POS. Retailers who implement this technology can benefit in their fresh food departments with better food safety, quality and shrink control with the available data such as sell-by-date, lot number, country of origin (COO), weight of the product and price over $99.99.

While awareness of the upcoming GS1 DataBar sunrise date for coupons is high among independent retailers, 38% said they will not be ready by the January 2011 date according to an online member survey conducted last month by the National Grocers Association. This January 2011 sunrise date is just for manufacturer coupons. What it means is that starting January 2011, manufacturer coupons will only have GS1 DataBar. The benefits of GS1 DataBar include increased flexibility of coupon face values and purchase requirements, reduced cashier intervention and the opportunity to validate complex offers making it a promotional vehicle.

In the coming months and years, GS1 Member Organizations will continue to work with their retailer communities to determine when GS1 DataBar will be used in open trade on any items between 2010 and 2014. At this point, 2014 is the date when GS1 DataBar can be used globally in any open trade on any product.

To be ready for GS1 DataBar, your POS system needs to have the scanning equipment and the POS software, including your back office application, that maintain the POS item files capable of reading and processing this format. If you need to know if your POS system is ready, please contact your STCR sales representative at (607) 757-0181.