ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

GENERAL QUESTIONS

 

1. Why GS1 Barcodes and GS1 Singapore?

GS1 Singapore is a member of the not-for-profit GS1 Global Standards organisation with offices in 114 countries. Officially appointed by GS1 Global since 1987, GS1 Singapore is the only authorised source for GS1 barcode numbers and standards in Singapore. We do not have appointed resellers.
GS1 Singapore has the sole mandate to administer the GS1 Global System in Singapore, working with local industries to adopt GS1 Standards, which is the most widely used open standards for supply chain management in the world. GS1 barcodes can assist companies to enhance operational efficiencies, interoperability and visibility along supply chains across multi-industries such as retail, online marketplaces, food services, healthcare, technical industries, transportation and logistics. GS1 Standards helps companies digitise processes and drive digital transformation. 

2. What is the cost of joining GS1 Singapore as a member?

This is determined by your company’s paid up capital, and the number of barcodes your business requires. The different fee tiers create flexibility to allow small, medium and big organisations to join GS1 Singapore and also benefit from the adoption of GS1 standards. This means that if your company has a lower paid up capital, your fees will be lower. Your company’s paid-up capital can be verified by your latest ACRA Business Profile forms.

3. What is the annual membership fee for?

This fee is to help cover the costs of providing comprehensive services and support to members during the annual membership period.

4. I wish to acquire GS1 Barcodes. How do I start?

Simply join GS1 Singapore as a member and you will be issued a unique company prefix used to identify your company and your products in barcode form. Application is easy and convenient through our website. Upon receiving your successful application and payment, we will issue your company prefix to you within an average of 2 working days.

5. What information / documents do I need to prepare before proceeding?

  • Latest ACRA Business Profile with an issued date not longer than 6 months prior to the current date of application

  • Download and fill up your product information according to our excel template provided on the website

 

BARCODE RELATED QUESTIONS

6. What is the difference between GS1 issued barcodes and barcodes from 3rd party sources? Why use GS1 barcodes instead of 3rd party alternatives

 

GS1 barcode numbers

 

3rd party / Non-GS1 barcode numbers

Get your authenticated GS1 barcodes from GS1 Singapore, the ONLY authorised body in Singapore to issue GS1 barcodes with “888” country prefix.

 

Barcodes from unauthorised seller are not authentic and not interoperable i.e. Not globally recognised.

A GS1 barcode number is a unique number tagged to your product, allowing you to Identify, Capture & Share your important product information seamlessly. GS1 Singapore issued unique barcodes are identifiable in our secured databank and are not recycled or re-sold.

 

The uniqueness of the numbers cannot be guaranteed as the barcodes may be re-cycled or re-sold to different parties.  This could mean that same barcode can be reused on 2 or more different products by different companies, unknowingly. This can cause potential confusion and legal ownership issues.

GS1 numbers can be used globally, and are well accepted by major retailers and e-marketplaces like eBay, Amazon and Google Shopping. The same GS1 numbers can be used on multiple platforms and enables quick and accurate product searches by consumers.

 

3rd party and proprietary numbers would not be recognised globally. This poses the potential risk of not being able to sell in retail stores and on marketplaces and could lead to costs related to product recalls, repackaging and relabelling and low consumer trust.

GS1 numbers can help in complying with regulatory requirements (eg. EU1169) such as fulfilling  clear product identification and traceability protocols  to address food / patient safety, counterfeits, consumer protection issues.

 

3rd party and proprietary numbers are not recognised globally and hence, unlikely to help in compliance with regulations.

 

 

24/7 access to weCATALOG online platform (secured databank) to capture, store, share and manage your product barcodes and information.  To help grow your business, Business Matchmaking is also facilitated via weCATALOG.

 

3rd party resellers do not provide comprehensive support services and cannot back-up the authenticity of their barcodes against GS1 local & global databanks. You may be on your own to resolve any potential issues.

Full local support including training sessions, networking events, solutions & consulting services and market surveillances. We also provide advisory support via phone and email.

 

 


7. How do I create GS1 barcodes?

After your membership application has been approved, you will be provided a secured login to our weCATALOG platform. You will receive step-by step instructions to help you easily generate your product barcode with the provided product information.

8. How are my GTIN/ barcode associated with my product?

GS1’s Global Electronic Party Information Registry (GEPIR) provides a connection between registered owners with their product GTINs. GEPIR is used by retailers and online marketplaces to verify GTINs, thus connecting the products to the rightful owner.

9. In the event that I no longer require GS1 services, what should I do?

You will need to send an official written notice to GS1 Singapore via email or letter for resignation (Three months advance notice is required). After which, we will send you a Members' Resignation Exit Form which you will need to complete and submit back to us for records.

To complete your company's resignation from GS1 Singapore, it is important that your company ensures that:

  • All products bearing GS1 barcode must be removed (online and in stores)

  • The Members' Resignation Exit Form is completed and sent back to GS1 Singapore

  • All outstanding payment is cleared

  • The original GS1 Singapore Members' certificate issued, is returned back to GS1 Singapore

 

10. My retailer has asked for UPC codes. What is the difference between EAN-13 and UPC codes?

UPC code is a 12 digit code issued by GS1 US and Canada, while EAN-13 is issued by GS1 offices in other countries. Most major retailers and online marketplaces are able to accept both EAN-13 and UPC barcodes as both types are base on authenticated GS1 GTINs.


ONLINE MARKETPLACES RELATED QUESTIONS

 

11. I have custom-made products and someone else is selling a similar product online and using my GTIN. What can I do?

On marketplaces, we encourage you to report an infringement and resolve it with the marketplaces directly, as two different products should not be using the same GTIN. Marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, Lazada etc, are cleaning their catalogue to eliminate such scenarios as it damages customer trust if the wrong product is received.

On Amazon, to protect your brand, you can enroll in Amazon Brand Registry which gives you access to tools that enable you to more accurately represent your brand, find and report violations, and share information that can help in proactively preventing infringement. Amazon Brand Registry helps you protect your intellectual property and create an accurate and trusted experience on Amazon.

12. What are the Marketplaces’ policies on the use of authorised GS1 GTINs?

To verify the authenticity of product GTINs, major marketplaces can check the GTINs provided by sellers / companies against GS1 Registry such as the GS1 Global Electronic Party Information Registry (GEPIR) database. GTINs that do not match the information provided by GS1 may be considered invalid, and may result in the removal of your Seller rights. The use of false product identification information, including unauthenticated UPC codes, is prohibited on Amazon.

For peace of mind, Amazon recommends obtaining GS1 GTINs directly from GS1 (and not from other third party unauthorised sources) to ensure GTIN authenticity and that the appropriate and verified information are reflected in the GS1 database.

Including proper Product Identifiers such as GS1 GTINs can greatly help buyers find what they are looking for, and improve listings’ visibility by prompting them to appear in search engine results. On eBay, new or manufacturer-refurbished items must use GS1 GTINs, which is one of the required product identifier. Since year 2018, merchants who wish to sell on Google Shopping require GS1 GTINs for all products.