Unilever and Nestlé have become the first suppliers to sign commercial contracts for using productDNA – GS1’s global scheme to get retailers using a common language to describe products– and are now actively using the service to help launch their new products with Tesco and Ocado, who have already started implementing productDNA within their businesses.
Both of these brands were part of the leading group of suppliers and retailers announced in 2017, committed to an industry charter for a common approach to improving the quality and consistency of product data management.
productDNA is the result of the retail industry getting together to agree a common language for products, being created “for the industry, by the industry.” Key benefits of the new productDNA service for the UK grocery industry include:
- A common data model for all retailers using a set of agreed product attributes
- A simpler, faster product catalogue shared between suppliers and retailers
- Third party verification to improve the quality of product data
GS1 UK is managing productDNA on behalf of the industry, through the Retail Grocery Advisory Board, whose members represent almost 80% of the UK retail grocery market.
“ProductDNA provides a single platform for us to communicate our product information through to customers and, ultimately through to consumers. Doing this quickly, efficiently and once, we hope this will provide some benefits for Unilever and our consumers and customers alike.”
– Richard Sadler, Customer Operations Director at Unilever
“The drive towards efficient end-to-end supply chains eradicating inefficiency and waste is of huge significance to us at Nestlé. productDNA is part of our strategy to improve efficiency and deliver better value to consumers and customers.”
– David Hix, Supply Chain Director, Nestlé UK
The product data is owned by suppliers, without any third-party commercial constraints, with all the data attributes follow rules established by GS1 global standards. The data model has been created by the industry members to support the introduction of new product lines. Further product data attributes to support e-commerce and helping shoppers make better informed decisions on the products they are buying will be added later in 2018.
“Our industry members have clearly understood that shoppers are increasingly looking for additional and better information about the products they are buying whilst at the same time suppliers want to ensure that their brands and products are well communicated in the market. We’re delighted that Nestlé and Unilever have helped create the productDNA service and will be the first to start using it to share the data about their wonderful products with retailers and shoppers alike.”
– Gary Lynch, CEO GS1 UK