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A beginner’s guide to UCC-128/GS1-128 labels

Article provided by ACT Data Services, Inc.

Today, major retail chains such as Walmart require the use of UCC 128 (also known as the GS1-128) shipping labels on all their packages. If your company participates in EDI (Electronic Data Interchange), you’ll come across the UCC-128 when your company receives a purchase order, which is classified as an EDI 850 in EDI terminology. In turn, your company must send an advance ship notice, identified as EDI 856, to your trading partner. This advance ship notice informs your trading partner of all the necessary details about your incoming package to ensure quick and efficient shipment and processing.

The UCC-128 label carries some of this information in barcode form. Variables such as the dimensions of the shipping container or the product’s expiration date correspond to digits in the barcode. The label is attached to the shipping container’s exterior, and when it arrives at its destination, it can be easily scanned and sent to the appropriate areas for processing. Your business partners won’t need to open the package or confirm all the necessary details; all they need to do is scan your package, and the EDI systems will tell them all they need to know.

Using the UCC-128 allows both you and your trading partners to save time and money. You won’t need to spend extra dollars on paper, because everything is electronic, and there will be much fewer errors and setbacks during shipping. Depending on your EDI provider, you might even have the option to easily print UCC-128 labels based on your data.

If you need an EDI provider who can help arrange your data for use on UCC-128 labels, contact Act Data Services, Inc. 1-800-ACT-DATA.