Do I need a UPC barcode?
Any person or company manufacturing a product with the intent to sell in the retail sector will need to have a barcode assigned to each of their product lines or types. This means that each variation of your product – different sizes, colours, flavours, etc. – will require a barcode, which can then be replicated on all items of that particular product which you produce.
Retail barcodes come both in the UPC (Universal Product Code) – 12-digit format; and also a 13-digit format known as EAN (European Article Number). When you purchase barcodes through SA Barcodes, we give you both formats so that you can satisfy the requirements of your intended retailers. However, the formats are very similar and most modern stores will accept either version – we advise that you check with your intended retailer about which format they prefer before doing your final print run. UPC barcodes are very useful to have on hand if you are planning on exporting your products out of South Africa as countries such as the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, New Zealand mainly use UPC barcodes in their retail stores.
A UPC barcode was first used in 1974. Before the creation of UPC barcodes shop owners as well as major retailers used to do everything manually, from stock take to the point of sale. This left alot of room for human error as well as required alot of time to complete tasks that could be done in a matter of minutes with a UPC barcode and a scanner.
If you are in any doubt if you should use UPC barcodes or EAN barcodes of course, feel free to contact us and our knowledgeable sales team will be happy to assist you.
Image credit: //www.valpo.edu/student/upc/committees/concerts.php