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What Is a Uniform Product Code (UPC)?

Understand how a UPC fits into the supply chain

A uniform product code (UPC) is a unique barcode used to identify and track retail products. Nearly every retail product in the United States has a UPC code making it one of the most easy-to-recognize symbols. A UPC barcode is typically made up of multiple vertical black lines and accompanying numbers. It is scanned at a point of sale or to identify the product within a warehouse setting. Similar to a UPC code, a European Article Number (EAN) code is used internationally for products sold anywhere, including outside of the U.S.