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UPC Code / Retail Material Code

"UPC codes are the silent storytellers of the retail world." - Anonymous

What is the UPC Code?

UPC Code, known as the “Universal Product Code”, is a 12-digit numerical structure used mostly in the retail industry that allows the products to be delivered to the end user to be tracked and managed throughout the entire supply chain with unique codes.

We see this code on the barcodes on the packaging of products almost every day.

Management of UPC Code GS1 (

GPC Code indicates the product category, while UPC Code indicates the product on sale. Below I will discuss the differences between the two.

UPC Code History

UPC Codes were first used in 1974. This structure played a major role in the development of supply chain management. Over time, it has become more sophisticated with the advancement of technology and today it allows products to be tracked around the world.

Benefits to Purchasing Processes

  • Suppliers can manage products better,

  • More effective monitoring of inventories,

  • Facilitates demand forecasting,

  • Reducing stock costs,

  • Reduces complexity throughout the supply chain,

  • Improving customer services,

  • Ensuring fast and accurate response to customer demands,

  • Ultimately, increasing customer satisfaction.

Differences between UPC Code and GPC Code

How to create a UPC Code?

It is explained in detail in the video below;

My articles about Product/Material Code


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