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The European Union, with its 28 Member States, provides a unique opportunity for GS1 to contribute to the elaboration of harmonized rules in virtually all areas that affect our members.

Patient safety, consumer information, product safety and e-public procurement are but a few examples of areas where our expertise can support effective policy-making.

Key GS1 projects underway in the EU include:

  • Legislative provision addressing food information to consumer
  • Fish & meat traceability
  • Fight against falsified medicine
  • Unique medical device identification
  • E-invoicing for public procurement and
  • Cash-handling for National Central Banks
  • Internet of Things: Digital Single Market Strategy
  • Parcel Delivery Market Roadmap

Learn more about EU legislation and how we can work together to achieve your policy goals.

Regulation 1169/2011, Food Information for Consumers - GS1 in Europe guidelines for implementing on-line provisions

EU Commission Expert Group on IoT: conclusions of the group

GS1 participates at the ICT Standardisation policy multi-stakeholder platform which meets four times per year: CIRCAB 

Please find here the link to GS1 in Europe

Fighting Illicit Trade

The fight against illicit trade is a priority for GS1. (See here more information in our FIT solutions webpage).

The European Union and WHO have taken legislative steps in this field that GS1 strongly supports.

After the adoption of the Tobacco Products Directive 2014/40/EU, three implementing and delegated acts were published, including a precise timeline to implement the new track and trace system for tobacco products.

According to the Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/574 on technical standards for the establishment and operation of a traceability system for tobacco products :

- the systems of traceability and security features must be in place by:

  • 20 May 2019 for cigarettes and roll-your-own tobacco.
  • 20 May 2024 for all other tobacco products (like cigars, cigarillos…).

- the National ID issuers should be appointed no later than 6 May 2019. Please see here the list of the ID issuer appointed by the National Authorities. 

Under the new EU system, all tobacco packs produced in, destined for, or placed on the EU market will need to carry unique identifiers. This marking will have information on the location, the date of manufacture, destination, etc. All product movements will be recorded, from the manufacturer to the last level, before the first retail outlet. Each unique identifier will be embedded in a machine-readable optical data carrier (e.g. a barcode) that allows public authorities to access the information using handheld devices, such as scanners or smartphones, online and offline. The legislation allows for the use of different types of optical data carriers (Data Matrix, QR code, DotCode, Code 128). In addition, all tobacco packs placed and exported to the EU market must be marked with tamper-proof security features, which is a supplementary measure in the EU’s fight against illicit trade of tobacco products.

If you need more information about GS1 public policy engagement on the fight against illicit trade, please contact

Anti counterfeit and OECD

Anti counterfeit initiatives by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

As illustrated during our public policy section at the Global Forum, OECD is extremely active on anti counterfeiting.

The OECD is focused on helping governments around the world to:

  • Restore confidence in markets and the institutions that make them function. 
  • Re-establish healthy public finances as a basis for future sustainable economic growth. 
  • Foster and support new sources of growth through innovation, environmentally friendly ‘green growth’ strategies and the development of emerging economies.
  • Ensure that people of all ages can develop the skills to work productively and satisfyingly in the jobs of tomorrow.

GS1 is a member of the OECD Task Force on Countering Illicit Trade (TF-CIT) whose goal is to foster international cooperation aimed at the reduction and deterrence of illicit trade in all sectors by promoting the sharing and development of principles and practices for implementation by OECD Member countries.

To know more, please visit:

GS1 at the European Internet Forum (EIF)

Elizabeth Board, Vice President of Global Public Policy and Francesca Poggiali, Public Policy Director Europe at GS1, took part at the General Assembly of the EIF.

The General Assembly was followed by a debate on how Artificial Intelligence (AI) can be a driver for productivity and economic growth in Europe, especially after the European Commission released its communication on AI.


Case Study: Providing accurate consumer-facing product information

GS1 Netherlands executes a data quality program based on physical sample checks and logical checks via the Clavis data quality checker.

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