What is in this article?:
- Buy smarter: Foodservice GS1 Standards make it possible
- The importance of GS1 Standards
It sounds like something only an IT guy can love, but the Foodservice GS1 US Standards Initiative can be a restaurant operator’s friend.
The importance of GS1 Standards
In the foodservice sector, the Foodservice GS1 US Standards Initiative has been driving the adoption of GS1 Standards in the form of universally unique identifiers such as Global Location Numbers (GLNs) and Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs). These two things, combined with the sharing of product information through an electronic “superhighway” called the Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN), are what will allow a restaurant, a manufacturer and a distributor to communicate product information using the same “language.”
Without GS1 Standards, many foodservice companies struggle to meet the growing consumer demand to know what’s in their food because of archaic systems and a lack of technological infrastructure to access this information electronically. While manufacturers and distributors need a common “language” to connect with each other and display item information on their websites and online ordering systems, restaurant owners and sales reps depend on the availability of critical information such as allergens, ingredient statements and images to make their purchasing decisions.
Not only does the adoption of GS1 Standards help drive sales and consumer confidence; it also greatly reduces errors in the supply chain traditionally seen as the “cost of doing business.” For example, the use of GTINs to identify products in the supply chain ensures that the right product is picked, shipped and received. That’s a big sigh of relief for the restaurant that has ordered one product and received something entirely different. Ever buy something online and track it to your door? Why shouldn’t restaurants have the same benefits of modern scanning and tracking? Think inventory management taken to a whole new level.
As a restaurant owner, operator, chef or other food industry professional, why is it important to understand all of this? Simply put, if we want this technology, the entire industry has to work together to advance their end of the game. Ask your distributors and suppliers how far along they are with adopting GS1 Standards. Sign up for a GS1 US webinar to learn more about the Foodservice GS1 US Standards Initiative. Want to stay ahead of other competitors? Subscribe to the GDSN to access the information about food your consumers want and need.
Communicating critical information helps ensure profitability and customer satisfaction—for all industry players. Foodservice companies that fall behind and don’t keep in step with their peers run the risk of becoming obsolete.
Jason Gunn heads supplier development for Rosemont, IL-based foodservice distributor US Foods.