The key steps
To gain the full benefits of the GS1 system, product numbers must be allocated correctly and the barcode symbols representing the numbers must be printed accurately - that is, to ensure that they scan first time, every time.
1. Allocating numbers
You must obtain your five-digit manufacturer number directly from GS1 Australia, after becoming a member. Allocate a unique five-digit manufacturer number to each different variant of an item. All items must be numbered to the lowest level of identification - e.g size, colour, style, etc (see the GS1 Australian User Guide and Technical Information Manual). For each manufacturer number, 100,000 different item numbers are available to be allocated, chosen at the discretion of the manufacturer. All manufacturer numbers issued by GS1 Australia must begin with the prefix 93. Your barcode master supplier or printer will calculate the check digit at the end of each number. Alternatively refer to the GS1 Australia User Guide and Technical Information Manual.
2. How to apply the bar code
Decide how the barcode will be applied. Will it be preprinted on the packaging or applied by label?
Barcode labels can either be printed by a printer or label service, or they can be produced in-house. Ask equipment suppliers for a demonstration of in-house bar code printing equipment.
Preprinted on packaging
A barcode master will be required if the barcode is to be printed on packaging.