Where are barcodes accepted?

What restrictions do retailers place on barcodes??

These are common and important questions about the use of barcodes.

Broadly speaking, there are three main groups of retailers, as outlined below –

  1. One small group of retailers effectively require you to be a member of GS1 (& hence pay GS1’s joining fees and annual fees).
  2. Another larger group of retailers require barcode verification reports – we can supply these for you if needed – we are the only barcode reseller (that we know of) who can provide these for you.
  3. The majority of retailers worldwide will accept any legal and legitimate barcode.

Please check with your specific retailer(s) prior to purchasing barcodes. If you have any questions about this, or require further information, please contact us.

NOTE – we often get customers saying “I want to sell my product to XYZ eg Woolworths Australia” – yet when they realise that barcodes for this will cost them hundreds of dollars more each year, they often decide to purchase our barcodes, and accept that if they ever receive an order from XYZ, it will be wonderful, and hopefully large, and they will happily get a barcode from GS1 then.

The chart below shows some restrictions that we are aware of. However, with tens of thousands of retail stores in NZ, and millions of retailers worldwide, it is impossible for us to know all the restrictions on barcode use. So – please check with your specific retailer(s) prior to purchasing barcodes.

Barcode Restrictions
Retail Category

(see details below)
Specific Retailers (see details below)Barcodes Ltd
(that’s us)
Other Barcode
Resellers
GS1
Require GS1 membership

Australia

Super Retail Group 1

USA

Wal-Mart/Sam’s Club, Kroger/Fred Meyers, Macy’s & J.C. Penney’s 2

NZ

Super Retail Group 3

China

Some distributors mistakenly believe that the barcode shows the country of origin of the product. Hence, they prefer or require barcodes that come directly from GS1.

Require verification reports &/or GLN numbers (which we can supply)

UK

ASDA 4
Tesco 5
Homebase 6

Ireland

Musgraves – Require barcodes from us to be listed on their buyer form as UPC and entered without the leading ‘0’. If this is done, they have no problem with our barcodes.
SuperValu – Is part of the Musgrave group – see note about Musgraves above. 7

Australia

Coles 8
Metcash 9
Myers 10
IGA (some stores) 11
Bunnings 12
Mitre 10 13
The Good Guys 14
Woolworths Australia central branches 15

USA

Some major retailers – reference

NZ

Foodstuffs NZ 16
Foodstuffs Note – There may be some restrictions on food and drink products going into Foodstuffs Auckland and Wellington branches only. This doesn’t restrict our barcodes entirely, but makes the process more complicated. Please contact us for the latest information.
Progressive Enterprises NZ? 17
Bunnings 18
Placemakers 19
Four Square 20
All other stores including Nosh, Farro, Huckleberry etc etc accept our barcodes.

Europe

Some major retailers in Europe- reference

Rest of World

Some major retailers in Japan & Korea- reference

No specific barcode restrictionsMost retailers in the world

Notes:

  1. Super Retail Group (Amart Sports, BCF Boating Camping Fishing, Goldcross Cycles, FCO Fishing Camping Outdoors, Ray’s Outdoors, Rebel, Supercheap Auto and Super Retail Commercial) – requires their suppliers to prove that they are a current member of GS1 – hence they will effectively only accept barcode numbers that have come directly from GS1.
  2. Wal-Mart/Sam’s Club, Kroger/Fred Meyers, Macy’s/Bloomingdales, & J.C. Penney’s in the USA apparently require you to be a current member of GS1 – you should check with these stores directly if you intend to sell to them
  3. Super Retail Group, which runs the Supercheap Auto stores in NZ, requires their suppliers to prove that they are a current member of GS1 – hence they will effectively only accept barcode numbers that have come directly from GS1. NOTE that Super Retail group also owns Rebel Sports in NZ – but we have customers using our barcodes on products within Rebel Sports NZ, so it doesn’t appear that there is any restriction. The only known restriction is Supercheap Autos in NZ.
  4. ASDA – All ITF-14 Barcodes must pass ISO/IEC Verification. Any printed stickers must achieve a minimum ‘C’ grade
  5. Tesco – Require GLNs (Global Location Numbers) for their suppliers
  6. Homebase – Require GLNs (Global Location Numbers) for their suppliers
  7. SuperValu appear to be starting to request barcodes that are ‘authorised’ by GS1, or for a GLN (Global Location Number) that has been issued directly by GS1. This might be part of their implementation of an EDI system. However, SuperValu are part of the Musgrave Group, and Musgraves have informed our customers that they will accept our barcodes (entered as UPC without leading 0). A customer recently contacted SuperValu to ask about barcoding requirements, but could get no definitive answer from them. Due to the connection with Musgraves, SuperValu should accept our barcodes.
  8. Coles suppliers are required to “submit the Bar Code Verification Report” – see here
  9. Metcash – require verification report (for each level of packaging, i.e. retail unit, Inner and Outer) – see page 7 here
  10. Myers – require barcode verification
  11. IGA – some stores require barcode verification
  12. Bunnings Australia – require all new lines to have a ‘Barcode Testing Report’ ie a verification report, that complies to GS1 standards. The verification reports we provide are suitable as they come from a GS1-accredited company and meet GS1’s standards.
  13. Mitre 10 – require barcode verification reports for products going into their stores.
  14. The Good Guys  – are implementing an EDI system, so they might require a GLN (Global Location Number) for their suppliers – if so, we can supply them (our customers report that The Good Guys have accepted products with our barcode numbers on them, and using a GLN supplied by us
  15. Woolworths Australia central branches – require all products to have a verification report. Previously this had to be done by GS1-Australia. However, now Woolworths accepts verification reports undertaken by other accredited companies – we can supply these. You will need to provide the actual verification reports for both the retail products and any cartons (ITF-14 barcodes) being used. Woolworths also say that they “only re-sell products that have GS1-system barcodes” – our barcodes come from the GS1-system. We have customers in Australia using our barcodes on products they supply to Woolworths Australia.
  16. Foodstuffs NZ require barcode verification reports, which we can provide, for all products entering their stores
  17. Progressive Enterprises – require adherence to barcode specifications, and possibly require barcode verification
  18. Bunnings NZ requires barcode verification reports, which we can provide.
  19. Placemakers NZ – requires barcode verification, which we can provide.
  20. Four Square NZ – some Four Square stores are now (from August 2016) requiring barcode verification, which we can provide.

 

If you have any questions about this, please contact us.

NOTEwe endeavour to make this as accurate as possible – however there are tens of thousands of retailers in NZ and Australia, and millions worldwide, who can each impose any restriction they wish. Please let us know if you are aware of any other restrictions.

NOTEthis is the most comprehensive list of restrictions we know of on the internet (please tell us if you find a more accurate one). Other resellers give no warnings, or are vague – so don’t trust them. We put a lot of time and effort into making this as accurate as possible – we doubt that you will find a more accurate list of restrictions on the internet (let us know if you do).