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50 years of transforming tomorrow

On 3 April 1973, an industry-wide agreement was made that changed the course of global commerce and gave rise to GS1

50 years ago, the GS1 barcode was created to transform grocery shopping and empower more reliable and resilient supply chains

Industry leaders came together to transform the way we shop and created the barcode. From that point forward, a simple scan at checkout connected a physical product to its digital identity—and information that could be shared in stores and throughout the supply chain. Since then, GS1 standards have powered more reliable and transparent supply chains across industries.

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Digital transformation, powered by GS1, will unlock limitless possibilities for businesses, people and the planet

Our future has never looked brighter. New multipurpose 2D barcodes powered by GS1 standards are transforming a simple scan, opening a gateway of in-depth product information. Whether on an in-store scanner or a mobile phone, they will create new opportunities to improve business operations, consumer experiences, patient safety and sustainability initiatives.

Food can with 2D barcode

Watch the ‘Generations of progress’ 50th anniversary video

Generations of Progress 50th Anniversary video

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Explore our history

Celebrating GS1's 50 years and beyond with our MOs testimonies

As we look into the next 50 years, we will look back at our GS1 Member Organisations greatest achievements since their founding and learn about the exciting plans they have for the future. Here are their stories.

Celebrating GS1's 50 years and beyond with our MOs testimonies