Barcode Guide


The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) began in 1981 as an exploratory committee under the American Production and Inventory and Control Society (APICS). They started a barcoding project team in 1981 to develop automotive industry standards for automated identification of products, and they were incorporated in 1982 by American Motors, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors (GM), and Volkswagen of America to improve quality and promote efficient processes through global standards development and harmonized business practices. The organization has grown to include Japanese automakers Toyota, Honda, and Nissan; heavy equipment manufacturers Caterpillar and Navistar International; and many of their suppliers.

In 1984, AIAG adopted the alphanumeric Code 39 - Regular symbology, which had also recently been adopted by the US Department of Defense. (Interleaved 2 of 5 and UPC-A were also selected for use in special situations.) That same year, the first industry-wide barcode standards were published for US manufacturers: AIAG B-1 Bar Code Symbology Standard and AIAG B-3 Shipping/Parts Identification Label Standard.

AIAG has expanded its purview to include product quality standards, automatic identification standards, materials management, electronic data interchange (EDI), returnable containers and packaging systems, and regulatory and customs issues. Although based in the US, AIAG standards and practices have been adopted by many organizations and manufacturers around the world.

In Europe, Odette International is an organization that, like AIAG, sets standards for communication, data exchange, and logistics management in the automotive industry for European manufacturers and their global trading partners. In Japan, the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) performs a similar role.

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