GS1 (formerly known as the Uniform Code Council or UCC) recently added the following content to their web site in which they recognize companies such as LEGAL BARCODES as legitimate resellers of UPC and EAN Barcodes.
If you purchase a UPC from a reseller, you better have confidence in that company to assign unique UPC numbers to varying customers. What assurance are you given that the number assigned has not already been sold to someone else? If you do decide to work with a reseller, make sure you feel comfortable with the legitimacy and security of the company you choose. There are some resellers which do provide physical company addresses and offer actual certificates illustrating the unique UPC number assignment.
Is the bar code image file you receive a vector based image made to the requirements of your packaging? The GS1 US recommends that original UPC bar code digital files be created based on resolution and packaging requirements. Depending on the printing process and dimensional requirements, UPC bar code can vary in size. Most of these resellers simply provide a low resolution jpg or gif file, which is not acceptable for proper reproduction. In addition, they only provide a single size and do not ask about printing processes or resolution. If a bar code can not be scanned, it is worthless and the money you might of saved was wasted.
LEGAL BARCODES added the following:
LEGAL BARCODES always provides a physical address and a phone number where a knowledgeable staff member will answer any questions you might have. We will provide you with a 600 dpi high resolution digital file of your UPC or EAN barcode in any format you request (jpeg, tiff, giff, bmp, PDF or EPS). We also mail you a Guarantee of Authenticity illustrating the unique UPC number assignment. You can feel comfortable with LEGAL BARCODES, not because of what we sell but because of who we are.
HOW WILL A RETAILER DIFFERENTIATE MY COMPANY AND PRODUCT IF A UPC PURCHASED FROM LEGAL BARCODES CONTAINS A COMPANY PREFIX NOT ISSUED TO ME DIRECTLY FROM GS1?
As stated earlier in our FAQ’s page, there are a few components to a Universal Product Code. True, there is a manufacture ID (now referred to as a company prefix), a five (5) digit number that follows it that allows the owner of the code to generate a 100,000 different combinations to assign to their products and a calculated check digit that is used at the point of sale (POS) to make sure the code was read properly by the scanner. Herein lies the secret that GS1 fails to tell you on their web site. Not one group of these numbers means anything, as they stand alone, to the retailer. Only when they are all joined in concert, assigned to a product and conveyed to a retailer does the code actually have any meaning at all. It is when this “virgin code” is scanned for the first time that the retailer enters and then downloads all your company information into his computer system. From that point in time when a product is scanned at the cash register it is your company information that is displayed and not the owner of the company prefix. In reality the only person that really cares about the company prefix is GS1 and they are not the ones that will be selling your products.
The main concern of a retailer is that the UPC you display on your product has not been stolen or “pirated” from another product. He may inquire about the origin of the code for that reason alone. Now that GS1 recognizes our right to sub-divide our numbers there should be no problem using codes issued by Legal Barcodes. The only problem we have experienced come from some Big Box stores that requires you to have a GS1 company prefix for their supply chain and storage needs.
Personal Note from the Staff at Legal Barcodes
Now that GS1 was forced to recognize the legitimacy of UPC sub sellers (stemming from the court decision in 2002) they have developed a new strategy to scare customers away from our services.
GS1 says we prey on our customer’s lack of knowledge of how the UPC’s system works. In reality we have found our customers to be some of the most informed people on the subject. They are the entrepreneurs that fuel our economy with new products, services and jobs. GS1 would lead you to believe that we provide inferior or low resolution images, when in fact we meet and exceed the standards that they themselves have set.
Next time you talk to anyone at GS1 ask them in what resolution they supply you with images, and guess what? They neither provide images nor the actual UPC numbers. Their only role is in assigning company prefixes and establishing industry standards. You must purchase barcode generating software and log the data yourself. This is the very service Legal Barcodes provides for free.
Once again, GS1 is very good at spending your money but very bad at helping you save it for other more important start up related expenses that growing businesses demand.
Over the years we have witnessed the growth in market share of some of our best customers and it is a natural progression that they then join the council of GS1. We are proud to have helped these companies in their initial entry into the marketplace. Legal Barcodes would like to do the same for you.
Thank you for letting us earn your business.