UPC Code

UPC Code: What Is It and How to Get It?

The UPC code (Universal Product Code) is a unique identifier for a product and is also known as a barcode. It is used for selling products to consumers and managing inventory.

The UPC code consists of a 12-digit number sequence. It was initially developed in the United States and is now widely used worldwide. Each UPC code contains manufacturer and product information. When a labeled product’s barcode is scanned at a point of sale, it ensures accurate reading of information and automatically transfers the product’s price and other details into the system.

UPC codes facilitate the identification and tracking of products, enabling effective management of inventory, analysis of sales data, purchasing processes, and logistics in retail environments. Additionally, they provide a fast and accurate purchasing experience for consumers.

GTIN (Global Trade Item Number) and UPC Code

Product numbers are part of the GTIN (Global Trade Item Number) system, which is used to uniquely identify commercial product items. The use of GTIN, particularly UPC codes, is common for listing products in catalogs like Amazon. Universal Product Codes (UPC) are a type of GTIN and are typically 12 digits long. The UPC number is derived by adding the digits on the left and right sides of the barcode.

To find your barcode number’s UPC code, you simply add the numbers on the left and right sides together, resulting in a 12-digit UPC code. The UPC number represents the unique identity of the product and serves as a identifier used at point of sale.

How to Get It (UPC Code)?

You can find your UPC or other GTIN numbers on your product packaging or product information. If you need to obtain a UPC code for your product, you can contact GS1 or other authorized GTIN providers to acquire the relevant number.

There are a few different methods for obtaining UPC codes. Here are two commonly used approaches:

Purchasing UPC Codes from GS1: GS1 is an internationally recognized organization that provides UPC codes. To obtain a UPC code, you need to become a member of GS1. You can follow these steps to purchase a UPC code: Visit GS1’s official website (gs1.org) and find the website specific to your country. Fill out the application form on the GS1 website to initiate the membership process. Pay the applicable membership fee, which may vary depending on GS1’s policies and your country. Once your membership process is approved, GS1 will provide you with your UPC codes. Purchasing from UPC Code Providers: Apart from GS1, there are various UPC code providers available. These providers allow you to purchase UPC codes without a GS1 membership. When purchasing these codes, consider the following factors: Reliability: Ensure that the UPC code provider is reputable and well-established. Pricing: Review the provider’s pricing policies. Some providers may charge a one-time fee, while others may offer annual subscriptions or different pricing models. International Usage: If you plan to use your UPC code internationally, make sure the provider offers codes that comply with international standards.

By researching and contacting a preferred UPC code provider, you can purchase UPC codes. However, remember that GS1 membership is generally recommended as it offers international recognition and compliance.

By applying these codes to your products, you can list them on platforms like Amazon and other sales channels. When obtaining a UPC code, it is crucial to use a valid and accurate code. Incorrect or counterfeit UPC codes may be considered a violation of Amazon’s policies, leading to listing rejections or sales restrictions. Therefore, it is important to obtain UPC codes from a reliable source.

Code Type Acronym Digit Count Usage
UPC Universal Product Code 12 Particularly used for retail inventory tracking, mainly in Canada and the United States
EAN European Article Number 13 Used for supply chain management, primarily in Europe and many other countries
GTIN Global Trade Item Number A universal product identification used by companies for all commercial products


In this table, you can find information about each code type’s acronym, digit count, and usage. UPC is a 12-digit barcode system primarily used for retail inventory tracking in Canada and the United States. EAN is a 13-digit barcode system used by retailers, especially in Europe but also in other countries. GTIN is a general numbering system used by companies to uniquely identify all commercial products.

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