5. What colours can I use ?
    In order for a barcode to scan successfully, the scanner must be able to recognise sufficient contrast between dark bars and a light background. Black bars on a white background are ideal, but certain other colour combinations are equally effective. Some colour combinations will not scan successfully.






Black on White Yellow on White

Blue on White Orange on White

Black on Orange Red on White

Blue on Orange Red on Light Brown

Green on White Light Brown on White

Dark Brown on White Black on Green

Black on Yellow Black on Blue

Blue on Yellow Black on Dark Brown

Green on Yellow Black on Blue-Green

Green on Red Blue-Green on Black


    This red film demonstrates the colour contrast required for the scanner to read the barcode.

    A scanner "reads" the barcode through a red light source, so what the scanner sees is quite different to what the human eye sees.

    Broadly speaking, light colours (including "warm" colours such as red and orange) can be considered suitable for the background, including the light margins, while dark colours (including black, blue and green) are suitable for the bars.

    Although many combinations are clearly visible to the eye, some will scan and some won't. The selection of colours which will and won't scan as shown above, is only a guide. Consult your printer and GS1 Australia to be certain.
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