Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC)

What are SSCCs?

SSCCs can be used by companies to identify a logistic unit, which can be any combination of trade items packaged together for storage and/or transport purposes; for example a case, pallet or parcel.

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  • Are a crucial key for traceability, since they uniquely identify each distributed logistic unit and its content

  • Enable companies to track each logistic unit for efficient order and transport management

  • Enable companies to receipt deliveries more easily

The SSCC can be encoded in a GS1 barcode or EPC/RFID tag, ensuring the logistic unit can be accurately and easily identified as it travels between trading partners, anywhere in the world.

When SSCC data is shared electronically via EDI or EPCIS, this enables companies to share information about the status of logistic units in transit, and reliably link it to related transport information such as shipment details.

The SSCC enables companies to link to additional information about the logistic unit. This information can be communicated via a Despatch Advice or Advanced Shipping Notice (ASN) prior to the logistic unit’s arrival. Upon receipt the SSCC will be scanned, providing the required information to speed up the receipt of goods as well as the subsequent invoicing process.

The 18-digit numbers are created as follows:


GS1 Company Prefix: This will be allocated to you by GS1 Australia and will vary in length from seven to nine digits. The physical builder or the brand owner of the logistic unit is responsible for the GS1 Company prefix used in the SSCC and makes the SSCC unique worldwide but does not identify the origin of the unit.

Serial reference: This is assigned by you, and we recommend that you begin with zeroes and increase the count sequentially. The structure and content of the serial reference is at the discretion of owner of the GS1 Company Prefix to uniquely identify each logistic unit. We recommend that this number should not have any meaning in it.

Check digit: This is calculated using the first seventeen digits of the number. A check digit calculator is available.

The GS1 Application Identifier (00) indicates that the GS1 Application Identifier data field contains an SSCC). The extension digit is used to increase the capacity of the serial reference within the SSCC. It is assigned by the company that constructs the SSCC. The extension digit ranges from 0-9.


SSCC Fact sheet

Logistics Labels Fact sheet

Identification FAQs 

Each individual logistic unit is assigned a unique number, which remains the same for the life of the logistic unit. When assigning an SSCC, the rule is that an individual SSCC number must not be reassigned within one year of the shipment date from the SSCC assignor to a trading partner. However, prevailing regulatory or industry organisation specific requirements may extend this period.