GS1 Canada has a unique community management role that allows collaboration and partnership with industry in a variety of work groups, technical groups, task groups and focus groups — collectively called Community Groups.

The Community Groups are made up of subject matter experts from businesses of all sizes operating in Canada. This collaborative forum ensures GS1 Canada is developing standards, guidelines and non-proprietary business solutions that meet the requirements of the Canadian industry. The three main focuses are:

Each Community Group defines its scope and objectives through a Mandate or Call to Action.

For all questions, including registration, please contact community.group@gs1ca.org.

The active Community Group list is as follows:

Mission and Objectives:

Develop and maintain a leading practice for the use of data synchronization attributes and the publication of Implementation Guidelines for industry use and reference.

Scope:

Development of standardized business requirements within the following categories: grocery, dairy, frozen, fresh foods, hardlines, general merchandise, seafood, poultry, chemical, beverages, alcohol, health and beauty, pharmaceutical, publishing, tobacco, garden, and office supplies.

Mission and Objectives:

Facilitate efficiencies and interoperability between trading partners, meet government regulations and protect the Canadian public through a pan-Canadian strategy. The Work Group will look to achieve this through end-to-end traceability between trading partners and a national strategy for the development and maintenance of a safe and effective cannabis supply chain.

Directed by the needs of the cannabis community, Work Group participants will be asked to prioritize the following four business drivers to work toward a pan-Canadian strategy.

  1. Barcoding - Advocate for common barcoding best practices to automatically identify and track products as they move through the supply chain.
  2. Attribution - Define attributes for cannabis product data that are consistent across the industry.
  3. Cannabis Edibles Nutrition Facts Table and Product Certification - Provide consistency in how information is gathered and defined for Nutrient Film Technique (NFT) certification with the highest level of data quality certified by brand owners.
  4. Location Identification - Provide a consistent way to communicate shipping and billing locations.

Scope:

Securing community alignment on global supply chain standards for cannabis products distributed and sold in Canada. This will be done by collecting, defining and evaluating business needs specific to the cannabis supply chain. These needs will be used to determine the potential impact of current and emerging regulations on data capturing requirements.

Purpose:

There is a request from industry to understand the DRS regulation needs across all provinces and to standardize non-competitive content to support industry in meeting regulation compliance.

This new Deposit Return Schemes Task Group’s (Task Group) objective is to:

  • Understand and define the attribute requirements for the deposit schemes and establish ECCnet registry as the one to-many platform for DRS information.
  • Understand the needs by different DRS by province to eventually establish a national registry.
  • Understand requirements for DRS outside of grocery; including foodservice.

The goal is to provide industry trading partners including brands, retailers, food service distributors, manufacturers with common tools that will increase better information sharing on deposit returns.

In 2021, the Grocery Board agreed sustainability to be a key topic for the board.

In 2022, GS1 Canada undertook industry discovery program to understand needs and priorities. Further investigation highlighted the need for standardization in DRS, single use plastics and EPR.

The objective of the Task Group is to bring brands, manufacturers, designated management bodies (by province) and Data Recipients of all sizes, together to gain an understanding of the current data challenges the collective community face when it comes to implementing DRS across all the provinces.

In addition, the Task Group will identify opportunities to increase value for all community members by extending ECCnet functionality. The Work Group will support achieving the following objectives:

  • Agree industry attributes for DRS for all provinces.
  • Develop a working Proof of Concept for DRS attributes.
  • Develop a national roadmap and strategy for DRS attribution and a national registry.

Scope and Framework:

Based on the priorities identified by the Grocery and the Foodservice Boards, the Digital Commerce Executive Forum will enable the evolution of our industry-directed solutions by:

  • Sharing non-competitive industry trends and developments, including identifying current and future industry pain points and opportunities across the whole digital ecosystem. Thinking broader than the domestic market, the Forum will gather lessons learned from other markets that are applicable to Canada.
  • Evaluating critical factors impacting efficiency and effectiveness of digital commerce and addressing challenges and opportunities for delivering exceptional customer and operator experiences.
  • Prioritizing industry needs while monitoring the implementation progress of the tactics assigned to work groups to deliver the collectively agreed strategies/priorities.

Scope:

  • Define the business need and scope to support the strategic initiatives voted by the Forum.
  • Understand Industry barriers and challenges as they relate to the strategic initiatives.
  • Report back to the Forum and provide a feasibility assessment and implementation roadmap for each of the priorities.

Mission and Objectives:

Advance the Clinically Integrated Supply Chain Roadmap as such that every patient record incorporates the common global supply chain language (standards) and accurate data that establish the foundation of patient safety; best possible patient outcomes; robust analytics (clinical outcomes, value-based procurement); safe, effective product recall management; cost savings; and operational efficiencies.

Scope:

  • Support the advancement of the Roadmap to a Clinically Integrated Supply Chain through the collaboration of stakeholders across the healthcare sector to actively implement GS1 Global Standards and national registries that enable tracking and tracing of products from manufacturer to patient health outcomes, reduction in medical error and safer healthcare system for Canadians.
  • Support the continued advancement of digital healthcare delivery and increased demand for supply chain visibility from point of sourcing through to electronic medical records and post patient care analytics.
  • Participate in peer-to-peer sharing aimed at supporting knowledge transfer, issue identification and resolution, deployment experiences and recommendations.
  • Establish cross reference strategies that consider the various standards and data elements required to link supply chain, to patient care, through to Electronic Medical Record (EMR) traceability and analytics.
  • Identify and engage healthcare organizations with active or pending back-end system capabilities, with the goal to engage these organizations in standards-based data synchronization implementation.
  • Identify and provide advice to the healthcare community / GS1 Canada on management of implementation issues, support needs and barriers to achieving critical mass adoption.
  • Deploy GS1 Digital Readiness Scorecards to assess current state and transformation needs at the organizational level and address barriers to the vision of critical mass adoption of Global Standards.
  • Direct standards development needs and provide tools to advance implementation efforts.
  • Provide a forum to advocate for a national Unique Device Identification (UDI) system leveraging GS1 global standards, national registries, and community management.

Mission and Objectives:

Review industry's business requirements impacted by nutrition regulations for incorporation into GS1 Canada's tools, namely ECCnet Registry and ECCnet Item Certification.

Scope:

Develop standardized business requirements for all food products within the grocery and foodservice industries.

This is achieved by:

  • Collecting, defining and evaluating business needs that have been impacted by nutrition regulations in the Canadian supply chain.
  • Identify emerging regulations and potential impacts on the industry and how they are related to GS1 Canada solutions, tools and services.

Mission and Objectives:

Establish and incorporate into ECCnet Registry and ECCnet Item Certification the nutritional business requirements for data synchronization, then publish Implementation Guidelines for industry use and reference.

Scope:

Continue the development of standardized business requirements for nutrition within the grocery and foodservice industries through:

  • Collecting, defining and evaluating both business and technical needs specific to the Canadian supply chain.
  • Determining if and how current or emerging regulations impact data-capturing requirements.
  • Developing and following community roadmap phases and timelines.

The Personal Protective Equipment and Industrial Cleaning Supplies (PPE/ICS) Work Group will identify the global supply chain standards required to support the procurement and traceability capabilities within these categories, for both business to business (B2B) and business to business to consumer (B2B2C) purposes, across all channels of use, i.e., grocery, foodservice, general merchandise and hardlines, pharmacy and healthcare.

Objective:

Through GS1 Canada’s community management process, the Work Group will identify the overall sector requirements for a seamless and transparent PPE and ICS supply chain, including barcode requirements and data requirements to be available in GS1 Canada’s National Product Registry (ECCnet).

Work Group participants will collaborate to develop PPE and ICS standards to enable trading partner data synchronization and over-arching interoperability; and agree on a common framework for:

  • product identification / barcoding;
  • product attribution / images;
  • product data capture; and
  • product data sharing across sectors and governments.

The Work Group will leverage and expand upon existing global standards and registries that currently include PPE and ICS as well as the collective knowledge and experience of subject matter experts. Additionally, the Work Group will prioritize the business issues and collaborate over time to develop sector alignment.

Mission and Scope:

Working to enhance patient safety and system-wide efficiencies in pharmacy through standards-based leading practices and peer-to-peer sharing for the pharmacy community. This committee looks to accurately identify medications at each stage of the pharmacy supply chain through automation and global standards adoption for positive change.

Objectives:

  • Support the National Movement for global harmonization of standards, bringing together stakeholders across the pharmacy supply chain.
  • Actively advance the tracking and tracing of products to patient health outcomes to achieve a safer health care system for Canadians.
  • Facilitate peer-to-peer sharing to support knowledge transfer, issue resolution and pharmacy deployment committee recommendations.
  • Advance an implementation roadmap for the integration of GS1 global standards and co-operating standards, as well as data integrity and synchronization protocols in pharmacy.
  • Establish cross-reference strategies that consider various standards and data elements required to link supply chain to patient care for traceability and analytics.
  • Recruit pharmacy stakeholders with active or pending back-end system capabilities and engage these organizations in standards-based workflow and data synchronization implementation.
  • Identify and provide advice to the pharmacy community and GS1 Canada concerning management of implementation opportunities and barriers to achieving critical mass adoption of global standards.
  • Reconcile standards development needs and provide tools to advance implementation efforts.
  • Provide a forum to develop a strategy that leverages ECCnet Industry Managed Solutions' protocols across the pharmacy supply chain.
  • Advance a community-based quality assurance process to report malfunctioning or missing barcodes and data integrity issues to manufacturers.
  • Support an industry adoption protocol for medication barcoding and labeling requirements in alignment with regulators around the globe.

Mission and Objectives:

Single use plastics requires immediate attention due new legislation becoming effective January 2023.

The Task Group has been established to:

  • Understand the requirements from the industry to comply with the new regulation.
  • Review of current attributes that are already in the GS1 Canada registry that could support the single use plastics changes.
  • Identification of use cases that would be relevant including potential implications to subscribers for each use case. Includes potential support for reporting requirements for those who are exporting the products.
  • Examining when a new GTIN would be required due to the new regulation.
  • Leverage findings to create the strategy that will include:
    • Updating any potential changes in our system.
    • Educating subscriber base.
    • Supporting subscribers with the potential changes.

The mission is to provide industry trading partners including brands, such as retailers, food service distributors, manufacturers with common tools that will increase better standardization and information sharing for single use plastics.

The objective is to bring together food service operators, brands, manufacturers, and Data Recipients of all sizes, together to gain an understanding of the current challenges the collective community face when it comes to complying to the new single use plastics regulation and how GS1 standards and solutions can support.

Purpose and Accountability:

There are significant efforts taking place already in Canada to prepare industry to be compliant with the legislation that has already passed and the legislation we expect to come. From an implementation perspective, data standards and sharing capabilities will ensure a consistent foundation that creates an even playing field whilst ensuring the industry achieves regulatory compliance in an efficient and transparent manner. The development of non-competitive data standards will be useful across any number of ongoing areas of work including transition to EPR (extended producer responsibility), expanding DRS (deposit returns scheme), single use plastics and the national plastics registry.

The goal of this Forum is to drive better environmental outcomes for organizations by using data to underpin the circularity transition, Environmental Social and Governance and sustainability goals. The Forum will also:

  • Confirm industry priorities, strategy and future roadmap in areas such as plastics waste, product waste and EPR reporting.
  • Review federal and provincial strategies and regulations.
  • Monitor global activities in this space.

Purpose and Accountability:

This Work Group reports to GS1 Canada’s Sustainability Executive Forum (Forum) and will undertake discovery for three focus areas as agreed upon by Forum members. Outcomes and decisions from these Work Group meetings will be reported to the Forum on an ongoing basis.

Key Focus Areas:

  1. Authentication of sustainability claims, certifications and audits;
  2. Efficient data sharing for reporting; and
  3. Recyclability labelling

Discovery work includes:

  • Outline current business needs, by examining issues, barriers and impacts with current processes;
  • Explore and define future state business requirements to ensure trust with industry; and
  • Outline an industry solution focused on global standards for Board approval.

Get Involved

GS1 Canada has a unique community management role that allows collaboration and partnership with industry in a variety of work groups, technical groups, task groups and focus groups (Community Groups).

The Community Groups are made up of subject matter experts from businesses of all sizes operating in Canada. They provide a collaborative forum and ensure GS1 Canada is developing standards, guidelines and non-proprietary business solutions that meet the requirements of the Canadian industry.

For all questions, including registration, please contact community.group@gs1ca.org.

Request Participation