Article numbering systems are numerical coding systems that serve to identify articles. They are the prerequisite for the automatic recording of article-specific information in retail (scanning, merchandise management systems). The EAN barcode has been used in Europe since the introduction of scanner cash registers.
EAN is the abbreviation for European (today: International) article numbering. The EAN code has 13 digits: two for the country code, five each for the article and manufacturer code and a check digit for correct reading. There is also an eight-digit version for small-volume items and for internal (in-store) labeling.