GS1 UK launches productDNA

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John Martin, head of productDNA

Not-for-profit standards organisation GS1 UK has launched its new grocery product data service on behalf of its members; represented by the Industry Charter of 12 leading retailers and suppliers, including Tesco, Ocado and Unilever. productDNA has been designed by this industry-wide group and offers a universal format to share and manage trusted product data, faster and more efficiently; tackling the current industry problems of inaccurate and inconsistent data.

The service aims to deliver accurate and consistent data by capturing, managing and distributing information in a uniform manner that can readily be accessed and shared by all parties in the supply chain. The productDNA service is comprised of three main components: a new industry data model for suppliers to share product data with retailers in a consistent format with standardised attributes; a cloud-based secure product catalogue and an independent physical product verification to ensure accuracy of product data.

The service defines and manages more than 150 industry-agreed data attributes for products across the grocery sector, including physical product data such as dimensions, weight and volume, as well as ingredients, nutritional values and allergen information.

The product data is owned by suppliers, allowing suppliers to freely share data without third-party commercial constraints, and all the data attributes follow rules established by GS1 global standards.

Marking the official launch of the service, GS1 unveiled its new productDNA verification centre managed in partnership with XPO Logistics.

Speaking about the launch of productDNA, Gary Lynch, the chief executive of GS1 UK said, “The grocery sector has spent years grappling with the transfer of data. productDNA sets out agreed processes and data rules, based on the common need to improve product data quality and efficient sharing across the retail industry. We’re excited to have created productDNA in partnership with our members to address these issues and look forward to its adoption by the industry.”

GS1 UK is managing productDNA on behalf of the industry, through its Retail Grocery Advisory Board, whose members represent almost 80% of the UK retail grocery market. A number of major retailers and suppliers have helped to create productDNA and early adopters are set to be announced shortly.

The launch is the latest announcement in a project which has been ongoing since last summer. In July 2017, GS1 UK announced leading grocery retailers and brands had committed to an industry charter for a common approach to product data management. The scope of the new productDNA offer was unveiled in December 2017.

All retailers and suppliers are invited to register their interest from today at: www.gs1uk.org/productDNA.