GS1 Australia - Associate Alliance Partner

A scanner "reads" the bar code through a red light source, so what the scanner sees is quite different to what the human eye sees.

Broadly speaking, light colours (including "warm" colours such as red and orange) can be considered suitable for the background, including the light margins, while dark colours (including black, blue and green) are suitable for the bars.

Although many combinations are clearly visible to the eye, some will scan and some won't. The selection of colours which will and won't scan, as shown below, is only a guide. Consult your printer, barcode supplier or EAN Australia to be certain.

Colour Combinations - For Scanning


Colour Combinations - Not Scannable


Some Will Some Won't
Black on White Yellow on White
Blue on White Orange on White
Black on Orange Red on White
Blue on Orange Red on Light Brown
  Green on White Light Brown on White
Dark Brown on White Black on Green
Black on Yellow Black on Blue
Blue on Yellow Black on Dark Brown
Green on Yellow Black on Blue-Green
Green on Red Blue-Green on Black


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