17-18/2013 An all too long and partially very harsh winter
Finally, I have to say, finally an all too long and partially very harsh winter has come to an end for those of us living at Western European latitudes. Spring has returned, with its warmer temperatures, a lot of sunshine – and the ceremonial annual storming of flower shops and gardening centres by amateur gardeners. Hundreds of thousands of customers crowded into gardening centres all across Europe on the first properly sunny day in April. Some centres even saw fit to extend their opening hours to be able to cope with the onslaught of customers.
When customers come to paying for their plants, flowers, bulbs and the like they met – for the umpteen thousandth time in their life – an invention that celebrated its 40th birthday early in April: the barcode. On 3 April 1973 leading food producers in the USA decided to introduce unified product identification standards, thus laying the basis for the success enjoyed by the barcode today. The rest, as the saying goes, is history.
Today, more than 5 billion products with a unique code are scanned every day. Just as the container is here to stay, so too the modern logistics industry can no longer be imagined without the technology of the barcode.
Head of forwarding and logistics