Military Shipment Label (MSL)

The Military Shipment Label (MSL) is required for all shipments under Mil-Std-129P. The 2D-PDF417 symbol encodes all of the information found on the label into machine-readable format.

Mil-Std-129R defines two versions of the MSL, which differ in the data required and how it is encoded in the PDF417 symbol. Defense contractors should use the Generic Cargo version, while the Unit Move is used by defense activities.

Required MSL Markings

MSL markings consist of both human readable and bar coded information on a recommended 4×6 inch label. The exact format of the MSL is not specifically mandated by the standard, as long as the required data is included along with compliant linear and 2D bar codes. Mil-Std-129R includes figures 2A and 2B (as) examples of acceptable MSL formats that may be used as guidelines in producing a label. [ §]

Refer to the Compliance Library Military Shipment Label for more information on the data requirements.

Use of DD1387

The use of DD Form 1387, superseded by the MSL, is used under these circumstances: “Attach a DD Form 1387 (Military Shipment Label) in lieu of a bar coded MSL for DoD contingency operations where manual entry is the only means available to document DTS shipments.” [Mil-Std-129R §5.2.1]