# How come most if not all barcodes differ on products yet they are manufactured by different companies?

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How come most if not all barcodes differ on products yet they are manufactured by different companies?

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There is a huge international organisation managing the barcode numbers. The first digits is assigned to each of the countries to manage themselves. They then assign the middle digits to each manufacturer. And lastly the manufacturer will assign the last digits to each of their product. The very last digits is control digits that is calculated with an algorithm to verify that the code scanned properly. This way each product gets its own unique product number which can be printed in barcode.

There is a huge international organisation managing the barcode numbers. The first digits is assigned to each of the countries to manage themselves. They then assign the middle digits to each manufacturer. And lastly the manufacturer will assign the last digits to each of their product. The very last digits is control digits that is calculated with an algorithm to verify that the code scanned properly. This way each product gets its own unique product number which can be printed in barcode.

You should realize that [barcodes](https://www.shopify.com/retail/barcode-faq) are just a font, you literally can type any words, codes, or phrases in English and the software will simply “translate” it to a barcode that says exactly that, in lines and spaces (1’s and 0’s) or dots and spaces.

[Universal Product Code](https://www.barcoding.com/blog/how-upc-barcodes-work-and-how-to-get-them) barcodes, on the other hand, are “managed” by a non-profit organization called GS1 and you have to get your barcodes as assigned by them. The GS1 organization ensures that the barcodes are unique / not duplicated between companies and products.

There is a huge international organisation managing the barcode numbers. The first digits is assigned to each of the countries to manage themselves. They then assign the middle digits to each manufacturer. And lastly the manufacturer will assign the last digits to each of their product. The very last digits is control digits that is calculated with an algorithm to verify that the code scanned properly. This way each product gets its own unique product number which can be printed in barcode.