Universal Product Code (UPC) Assignment


A comprehensive document that describes what a UPC is and how it is used. To ensure buyers and associate buyers know what documents are needed for a product to be assigned a UPC, and to know when a new UPC needs to be assigned to a product.





  • Buyer/Associate Buyer – Gathers the necessary documents needed to put a project into PLM system and states whether or not a new UPC is needed
  • Packaging and Compliance Project Lead-  Assigns the UPC in the PLM system






  • ANS assigns UPCs that start with 99482 for all their items.
  • Control Labels may or may not have UPCs that begin with 99482.






  • UPC –  Universal Product Code is a barcode symbology that is used for tracking trade items





5.1 When a new UPC is required.

5.1.1 New items always get a new UPC assigned.

5.1.2 Net weight changes

5.1.3 Brand Change Product goes from 365 Everyday Value to Whole Foods Market.

5.1.5 Vendor Change This does not apply if the vendor underwent a name change.

5.1.6 Reformulation that would change the product name. Product goes from conventional to organic. If reformulation does not change product name and no other change is being made (i.e. size, UOM or vendor change), a new UPC assignment would be up to the Buyer’s discretion.

5.1.7 Case UPC If the individual item UPC changes, then the case UPC must also change.


5.2 When a new UPC is not required.

5.2.1 Facility Move

5.2.2 Case Pack Changes

5.2.3 Vendor Name Change

5.2.4 Die Line Change

5.2.5 Printer Change

5.2.6 Basic/Simple Redesigns


5.3 Necessary information for UPC assignment.

5.3.1 Vendor Name

5.3.2 Brand Whole Paws, 365 Everyday Value, Whole Foods Market or Control Label

5.3.3 General product description

5.3.4 Size and UOM

5.3.5 Is this a product change request (PCR) that requires that a new UPC be assigned? If this product is replacing an existing product, the existing product’s UPC is needed.


5.4 UPC Assignment

5.4.1 Buyer enters all required information into PLM system. All information in 5.3 is gathered on the Private Label Order Guide (PLOG). Buyer outlines whether or not a new UPC is needed.

5.4.2 Packaging and Compliance Project Lead assigns UPC and enters UPC into PLM system. Example: All Exclusive Brand products start with the same 5 digit code: 99482.

5.4.3  If there are UPC changes once the PLM activity has passed the above step, the Buyer should kick-off a new activity to capture the UPC changes.






Department Approval Date
Executive Coordinator Exclusive Brands


Team Leader Packaging & Compliance