The barcode has had a major technological transformation on retail shopping, allowing speedier checkouts, more accurate inventory, and many other advantages, saving businesses billions of dollars per year, worldwide. The beginning of this revolution started many years prior (see my other posting about the history of the barcode if you are interested), but the first transactional item was scanned 40 years ago today.
With photographers and reporters looking on, at 8:01 am on June 26, 1974 the first transactional item was scanned by Sharon Buchanan at a Marsh's supermarket in Troy, Ohio. It was a 10 pack of Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit chewing gum, which rang up for $0.67 US. This item was not specifically selected to be the first, it just happened to be the first item lifted from the cart by Clyde Dawson.
This first package of gum that was scanned is currently displayed at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History, as shown in the picture below.[1, 2]
Happy anniversary barcode! 40 years of changing the face of retail and inventory management!
Barcode Brian Blog
You can find out more about me by taking a look at the About page and you can contact me through the Contact page.