GS1 announced a Standard for GTIN Non-Reuse for all industries from 31 December 2018.
What does GTIN Non-Reuse Standard mean?
When a GTIN allocated to a trade item SHALL NOT be reallocated to another trade item. This applies to ALL trade items, regardless of sector.
Why is the need for a GTIN Non-Reuse Standard?
With the industry-driven change, the standard will help companies get unique product identification “right” from the start. Keeping product identification truly “unique” and persistent in both the physical and digital world is needed to support today’s omni-channel consumer experiences. Consistency across the physical and digital world is foundational to the future of commerce.
Trade items (and their associated data attributes) remain in digital/online paths to purchase far longer than they remain in physical-store supply chains. For example, in consumer-to-consumer marketplaces it can be decades. Therefore, GTIN non-reuse is critical in an omni-channel world.
What does it mean to the industries?
a. Reduced consumer confusion in the market and in supply chain data exchange systems
b. Increased transparency to the consumer
c. Better brand visibility online
d. Enhanced product traceability with uniqueness of product history
e. More efficient after-sale consumer uses of GTIN (Warranty, Maintenance, Repair)
f. Improved sales analytics
Does the GTIN Non-Reuse Standard apply to all levels of the packaging hierarchy?
Yes, the Standard applies to ALL trade items in the assigned packaging hierarchy, regardless of sector from 31 December 2018 onwards.
How can I adhere to the Standard?
You can use our weCATALOG to manage your GTINs at the item level.
Why individual GTINs can’t be reused?
Today, products are often available for purchase both in-stores traditionally and online requires a valid GTIN for each product listing. It has led the industry to call off the decision of reuse individual GTINs in order to ensure that product identifiers are to be permanent and truly unique. In addition, some sellers have already been enforcing a policy of zero GTIN reuse.
As GTINs are unique and permanent—even in the digital world. Simply stated: products today can be traded “forever”, thus they need identifiers (such as the GS1 GTIN) which last “forever”.
Is there any exceptions?
i. If a GTIN has been assigned to an item, which was then never actually produced, the GTIN may be deleted from any catalogue immediately without first being marked as discontinued. In this exceptional case, the GTIN may be re-used 12 months after deletion from the seller’s catalogue.
ii. Trade items that have been withdrawn from the market and are reintroduced may use the original GTIN if they are reintroduced without any modifications or changes that require a new GTIN as specified by the GTIN Management Standard.
For more information:
You can refer the GTIN Management Standard for the latest updates at https://www.gs1.org/1/gtinrules/en/