• Standards

  • The GS1 standards are designed to help you identify, capture and share information with your trading partners – wherever you are in the world. Our standards are the global language of business.

  • Why use GS1 standards?

    Well-designed standards are the foundation for clear, understandable exchanges between trading partners. By using them, you can keep costs down and reduce complexity in your supply chain.

    The GS1 standards are:

    • Global – no matter where you operate, the GS1 standards will work
    • Robust – they are purpose-built by industry, for industry
    • Multi-sector – they work within any organisation or business, and are widely adopted across different sectors
    • User-generated – they are built and maintained through a global, collaborative forum of volunteers from all industries
    • Scalable – they can be used by small businesses or multinationals

  • How we create standards

    Around the world, GS1 works together with industry to maintain and create the GS1 system.

  • GS1 system brochure

    Read about how businesses use the GS1 system and basic facts about numbering and barcoding.

  • The GS1 system

    The GS1 system is a set of standards for the unique identification of all trade items, services, logistic units, consignments, assets, documents, relationships, parties and locations at every point in the supply chain.

  • The standards


    GS1 standards can be grouped according to their role in supporting the information needs of real-world supply chain business processes. Browse them below or visit the global GS1 Architecture Group for more information.


    Identification numbers

    In the GS1 System, numbers are used to identify anything from products to invoices and warehouses. They make it easier to identify, track and share data in your supply chain.

    Learn more: Identification numbers


    Barcodes and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

    Use these globally-recognised standards to represent identification numbers. These data carriers capture information efficiently and effectively, bridging the gap between physical objects and electronic data.

    Learn more: Barcodes and RFID


    Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

    Use these standards to automate the sharing of transactional information – such as purchase orders and dispatch advice – and save time and money, too. 

    Learn more: EDI

    Data synchronisation

    Use these standards to share your company’s master data (product and pricing information) with all trading partners in your supply chain.

    Learn more: Data synchronisation

    Visibility event data

    Use these standards to create and share event-based information within your business and between trading partners. They are the foundation for electronic business transactions.

    Learn more: Visibility event data


    Other standards and guidelines

    GS1 has other standards and guidelines that support the implementation or use of the core standards to support supply chain processes. 

    Learn more: Other standards and guidelines