RMSCC Supply Chain Information Standard

Standard: Carcase Tickets (barcodes)
Status: Released
Issue date: Oct 2005
Endorsement: Australian Meat Industry Language and Standards Committee, AUS-MEAT, GS1

The purpose of this standard is to define a consistent supply chain approach to the numbers and barcodes applied to carcase tickets for ease of barcode scanning and data interoperability along the red meat supply chain.

The overall objective is to ensure that each participant along the red meat supply chain can easily extract the trade information about a carcase of meat.

Each carcase ticket is assigned a barcode following the GS1 standards. This is to ensure that each carcase ticket is barcoded with a globally unique number that provides the basis for traceability along the whole supply chain. For more information on the GS1 standards go to: gs1.org


This RMSCC Supply Chain Information Standard is a voluntary red meat industry standard. The use of this standard may be a commercial requirement for certain supply chains and may be required for participation in certain industry programs such as Meat Messaging.

The RMSCC Supply Chain Information Standard is limited to carcase and carcase portions for non-retail trade.

The carcase and carcase portions of non-retail trade products are intended for domestic and international export supply chains.

The packaging of carcase and carcase portions of non-retail trade products include exposed as well as wrapped carcase and carcase portions.

All carcase and carcase portions of non-retail trade products will be ticketed with a suitable market compliant trade ticket (compliant to trade descriptions and AUS-MEAT National Accreditation Standards requirements) including a GS1-128 barcode with the information and encoding defined in this standard.


AUS-MEAT trade descriptions and AUS-MEAT National Accreditation Standards requirements, GS1 GTIN standards, GS1 Application identifiers.


Barcode Symbology

The barcode symbology used in the Australian Red Meat Industry Standard Variable Weight Carcase Label is GS1-128 (previously called UCC/EAN-128). The GS1-128 Barcode Symbol allows secondary attribute information over and above primary item identification to be represented in the barcode. Application Identifiers (AIs) effectively act as prefixes for this information and define the meaning and structure of the embedded data which follows. It also allows attribute information such as weight, slaughter date and serial numbers to be represented in a standardised format. In doing so, attribute information encoded by one company can now also be scanned and interpreted by any other company in the supply chain.

Carcase ticket barcode numbers

Minimum barcode information required represented by Application Identifiers (AIs)

AI Example Data & Format Attribute Information
(01) 99327111031766
n14- 14 digits numeric (fixed length)
Global Trade Item Number (GTIN)
Item Identification. (Primary identification of the product carton)
9 indicates that it is a variable measure (weight) product
93271110 - GS1 Company Prefix. (7, 8 or 9 digits in length depending on the GS1 Prefix allocated)
3176 – Company product code or AUSMEAT code. 3, 4 or 5 digits in length.
6 – Check Digit
(310n) 001235
n6 - 6 digits numeric (fixed length)
Net Weight – Kilograms
In this example as n = 1, start at the very right of the measurement data field and count to the left 1 place.
The net weight is 123.5kg.
n represents the decimal point indicator, which shows where the decimal point is located.
(11) 020729
n6 - 6 digits numeric (fixed length)
Production Date (YYMMDD)
Referred to as the 'Kill' or 'Slaughter' date in the meat industry
In this example the kill date is 29th July 2002.
(21) 1249656L
an…20 – alpha numeric up to 20 characters (variable length)
Serial Number
In this example an 8 digit alpha-numeric serial number has been allocated.

Note: Additional AI's can also be used at the suppliers discretion.


Concatenation (stringing AIs together) is an effective means for presenting multiple element strings in a single GS1-128 Barcode Symbol and should be used to conserve space and optimise scanning operations.

Maximum Length

When concatenating AIs, the maximum number of characters in the GS1-128 Barcode Symbol must not exceed 48. This includes Function Code 1 (FNC1) when used as a field separator but excludes auxiliary characters and the Symbol Check Character (Modulo 103).

The length of the GS1-128 Barcode Symbol must never exceed 165mm, including the Quiet Zones (light margins).


The size of the GS1-128 Barcode Symbol depends on:

  • The X-dimension (single bar width) chosen.
  • The number of characters encoded.
  • The number of non-numeric characters in the data.

For the meat industry it was determined that it would be primarily a hand scanning requirement, which has an allowable magnification range of 25% - 100% (X-dimension 0.25mm - 1.02mm)

For GS1-128 Barcode Symbols that are to be scanned in a general distribution environment (primarily automated scanning), the allowable magnification range is 48.7% - 100% (X-dimension 0.50mm - 1.02mm).

Height of Bars

The minimum bar height is 13mm. For scanning in a General Distribution (automated scanning) environment, the minimum bar height for a GS1-128 Barcode Symbol is 32mm.

Human Readable Interpretation

Print the Human Readable Interpretation either above or below the symbol bars. Make sure the Application Identifiers (AIs) are clearly recognisable by placing them in brackets in the Human Readable Interpretation only.

Comments and Feedback:

Comments and feedback about this standard are sort from industry. This includes any requests for any enhancements or changes. Any submitted comments, feedback or change requests are reviewed by the Work Group following the RMSCC Core Principles and the RMSCC Standards Development model. To submit comments, feedback or change requests click on this link: RMSCC Feedback and Change Requests.

Additional information:

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