GS1 Identification Standards

GS1 identification standards enable organizations to uniquely assign GS1 Identification (ID) Keys to products, documents, physical locations and more within their supply chains.

To build a GS1 ID key, your organization must become a GS1 Canada subscriber.

GS1 Identification (ID) Keys

GS1 identification (ID) keys are global standards that give organizations efficient ways to access information about their products in the supply chain, and share this information with trading partners.

GS1 ID keys are globally unique and increase supply chain visibility. These ensure products will always be correctly identified on a global scale thus minimizing the risk of confusion and enhancing supply chain transparency and traceability for everyone.

There are 12 GS1 ID keys, allowing your organization to connect physical events and related information, as in the table below.

Download a pdf file in a grid format with details related to the "2023 GS1 ID Keys"

  • Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) GTIN can be used by a company to uniquely identify all of its trade items. GS1 defines trade items as products or services that are priced, ordered or invoiced at any point in the supply chain. Every product has its own GTIN to ensure that it cannot be confused with another product.

    Learn more about GTIN

    Learn more about Barcodes

  • Global Location Number (GLN) GLN can be used by companies to identify their locations, giving them complete flexibility to identify any type or level of location required.

    Learn more about GLN

  • Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC) Serial Shipping Container Code can be used by companies to identify a logistic unit, which can be any combination of trade items packaged together for storage and/or transport purposes, for example a case, pallet or parcel.

    See how SSCC works

  • Global Returnable Asset Identifier (GRAI) The Global Returnable Asset Identifier is one of two GS1 keys for asset identification. This GS1 key is especially suitable for the management of reusable transport items, transport equipment, and tools and can identify these returnable assets by type and if needed also individually for tracking and sorting purposes.

    See how GRAI works

  • Global Individual Asset Identifier (GIAI) The Global Individual Asset Identifier is one of the two GS1 keys for asset identification. Companies can apply a GIAI on any asset to uniquely identify and manage that asset. This could be a computer, desk, vehicle, piece of transport equipment, or spare part, as just a few examples.

    See how GIAI works

  • Global Service Relation Number (GSRN) The Global Service Relation Number can be used by services organizations to identify their relationships with individual service providers (doctors or nurses) and individual service clients (electric company's metering point).

    See how GSRN works

  • Global Document Type Identifier (GDTI) Companies can use the Global Document Type Identifier to identify documents, including the class or type of each document.

    See how GDTI works

  • Global Identification Number for Consignment (GINC) Companies can use the Global Identification Number for Consignment to identify a consignment comprised of one or more logistic units that are intended to be transported together.

    See how GINC works

  • Global Shipment Identification Number (GSIN) The Global Shipment Identification Number (GSIN) is a number assigned by a seller and shipper of goods to identify a shipment comprised of one or more logistic units that are intended to be delivered together.

    See how GSIN works

  • Global Coupon Number (GCN) The Global Coupon Number enables companies to identify digital coupons - a ticket, document or electronic presentation that can be exchanged for a financial discount or for loyalty points when making a purchase.
    Note: Canada currently does not apply GCN.

    See how GCN works

  • Component/Part Identifier (CPID) The Component/Part Identifier enables companies to identify components and parts, typically where an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) defines the specifications of a component or part that is part of its final product (Example: Automobile, small appliance, white goods etc..)

    See how CPID works

  • Global Model Number (GMN) The Global Model Number enables users to uniquely identify the product model through the entire life cycle of the product: design - production - procurement - use - maintenance - disposal.

    See how GMN works