Global Trade Item Number


Developed by the GS1, the GTIN is a unique and universal identifier for trade items. Comprised of up to 14 digits, these identifiers are used to look up product information in a database. The uniqueness and universality of these identification numbers is useful in establishing connections between identical products in multiple databases.


The GTIN is only a term and does not impact existing standards or place additional requirements on scanning hardware. Although the GTIN can be used in multiple data carriers, such as radio frequencies, currently it is used exclusively within bar codes. For North American companies, the UPC, a 12 digit data structure, is an existing form of the GTIN.

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