Global Product Classification (GPC)


GPC is part of the GS1 standard package for Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN)

The GS1 standard package enables consistent use of the GS1 standards globally. The use of specific keys and their associated data carriers are supported by allocation rules, Bar Code or Radio Frequency Identification specifications and other regulations.

 In a trading relationship, buyers and sellers can distinguish themselves (WHO) and their locations (WHERE) with the Global Location Number (GLN) key. They can identify their products (WHAT) with the Global Trade Identification Number (GTIN) key. The Target Market (TM) key determines the geographical area where the products are to be sold. The GPC Brick code key identifies the product group to which the individual product belongs.

 GPC is a structure for product classification (taxonomy), not individual product identification (GTIN) or description (dictionary). In other words, GPC provides a way to abstract rather than describe an individual product (which is handled by the trade item attributes)


GPC General Principles:

  Modularity and flexibility of the classification.

Logical grouping of bricks. The logic behind the schema is transparent

Universally applicable and not culturally biased.

Initially published in Oxford English.

Facilitate the collection of relevant classification information acceptable by the industry.

Schema Principles:

  The GPC schema provides an optional 4-tier hierarchy Segment, Family, Class and Brick.

Each level of the schema is determined by rules and/or principles, and also industry decision. However the rules applied differ depending on the level – Segment, Family, Class, Brick, Brick Attributes and Brick Attribute Values.

The business rules apply to any level or entity of the schema

Each Brick can be assigned 1 or more Brick Attributes; in turn each Brick Attribute has a set of associated Brick Attribute Values.

GPC Coding :

  All numbers are 8 digit, non-negative integers

Unique codes for identifying each product at a brick level

Constant (deleted bricks are not reassigned)

Brick codes always start with 1

Brick Attribute codes always start with ‘2’

Brick Attribute Value codes always start with 3

Temporary GPC Brick Code: 99999999

 This brick code is used for products that cannot be classified within the GS1 Global Product Classification schema. It serves as a temporary holding place for products, which cannot be classified within the current segments of the schema due to its current evolution. It excludes all products that can be classified within the published GS1 Global Product Classification Schema.