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An example of an EAN-8 barcode

An EAN-8 is an EAN/UPC symbology barcode and is derived from the longer International Article Number (EAN-13) code.[1] It was introduced for use on small packages where an EAN-13 barcode would be too large; for example on cigarettes, pencils, and chewing gum packets. It is encoded identically to the 12 digits of the UPC-A barcode, except that it has 4 (rather than 6) digits in each of the left and right halves.[citation needed]

EAN-8 barcodes may be used to encode GTIN-8 (8-digit Global Trade Identification Numbers) which are product identifiers from the GS1 System. A GTIN-8 begins with a 2- or 3-digit GS1 prefix (which is assigned to each national GS1 authority) followed by a 5- or 4-digit item reference element depending on the length of the GS1 prefix), and a checksum digit.

EAN-8 codes are common throughout the world, and companies may also use them to encode RCN-8 (8-digit Restricted Circulation Numbers), and use them to identify own-brand products sold only in their stores. RCN-8 are a subset of GTIN-8 which begin with a first digit of 0 or 2.[2]


  1. ^ "EAN-8 barcode". Glossary. GS1. March 2016. Retrieved 16 March 2017. A barcode of the EAN/UPC symbology that encodes GTIN-8 or RCN-8.
  2. ^ GS1 AISBL. "Section". GS1 General Specifications (PDF). GS1. Retrieved 2017-03-16. The RCN-8 Prefixes 0 or 2 are system identifiers that show that the item identification number is under the sole control of the assigning company and that it is for internal item distribution. The item reference is allocated by the company that uses the element string. The positions N2 to N7 may contain any digit.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)