BMEcat 2005 ETIM Version 4.0.3

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For data suppliers who manage their product information on international level, the choice of a data exchange format is often BMEcat 2005. When suppliers want to use a BMEcat 2005, we strongly recommend to use at least the ETIM V4.0 guidelines, but we prefer the BMEcat 2005 Etim v5.0. guidelines. If you are using an older BMEcat ETIM guideline version, we advice to update as soon as possible.

The previous BMEcat ETIM guideline versions do not sufficiently match the current data needs of the industry. The complete ETIM guideline can be downloaded at  the download section of ETIM International.

Think twice before you start

If you have files according to previous ETIM guideline versions, we recommend that you upgrade to the latest version 5.0 as soon as possible. Point your software or ICT partner to this online documentation of 2BA. It are not rules imposed by 2BA, but Extensible Markup Language rules, a standard of the World Wide Web Consortium.

Developing an XML message based on an XSD and the associated rules is a task that requires XML specialization.

Common mistakes:

  • Incorrect specified headers
  • Missing mandatory elements
  • No closed elements (only <ELEMENT> but missing </ELEMENT>)
  • No open elementes (missing <ELEMENT> only </ELEMENT>)
  • Empty optional elements (<ELEMENT></ELEMENT>)
  • Improperly defined NL Characteristics (e.g. wrong specified field types)
  • Failure to follow the order specified in the XSD
  • Not escaping symbols within strings such as an ampersand (&).

To avoid disappointment, we recommend that you use a specialized software party with sufficient XML knowledge. Of course, there are also various PIM software parties affiliated with 2BA that export a valid dataset via an efficient route so that you can easily deliver your valuable data to 2BA.


InstallData is conforming the data pool according to the Dutch standards of Ketenstandaard with the INSBOU and SALES005 XML files. The supported exchange formats are mapped to the internal fields of the data model. Some internal fields may differ from the length or type as described in the guideline of the exchange formats. We create as much clarity as possible but there may be differences, which we mention in the mapping. For example, in BMEcat 2005 the short description has a length of 150 characters, in the data model only 70 characters.

The mapping of BMEcat 4.0 versus InstallData is available here.

InstallData requires more fields then originally available in the BMEcat structure. In cooperation with ETIM Netherlands, we have defined country specific guidelines for the Netherlands. Please use this UDX fields as defined in the ETIM guideline 4.0 starting at page 101 and page 162.

NL Characteristics


NL_002-1 DIN-number
NL_002-2 ISO-number
NL_004 Single use quantity
NL-005 List date_MSDS
NL_006 Country of production origin
NL_007 Delivery time
NL_008 Long ERP description
NL_009 Supplier IDref
NL_010 Manufacturer_IDref
NL_011  Buying group
NL_012  Orderable indicator
NL_013  CE indicator
NL_014  Fragile on package
NL_015  Best before date on package
NL_016-1  Cuttable indicator
NL_016-2  Maximum cutting length
NL_017  Contains Batteries
NL_018  Code VAT rate
NL_019  ROHS indicator
NL_020  UNSPSC code

The BMEcat 2005 4.0 file should be validated according to the XSD to be sure of full compliance with InstallData. We recommend using one of the tools below to validate your file:

1. ETIM BMEcat validation tool (ETIM account needed)
2. 2BA validation tool

There are a few exceptions in the current XSD (filedate: 2019-05-01).​

  • ETIM classification is not mandatory for InstallData in the T_NEW_Catalogue.

Corrections for the ETIM 4.0.2 Guidelines documentation (all are correct in XSD file) are:

  • On page 102, for the UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC_CODE = "NL-008" there is a typing error, this must be "NL_008".

Extra information:

  • The file name (page 9 of the ETIM 4.0.2 guidelines) is free adjustable when it will be uploaded to InstallData.
  • According to the ETIM 4.0.2 Guidelines, each optional element can be marked as mandatory on the level of an individual ETIM country. ​


The header of the BMEcat with ETIM guidelines 4.0 should be like the example below:
Important notes:
  1. GENERATOR_INFO has to contain the name of the PIM software or BMEcat generator.
  2. LANGUAGE will be used as default language when no language is set at the description elements. The use of language codes at the descriptions is highly recommended!
  3. MIME_ROOT is optional, if the local attachments are stored in a folder, the folder name should be filled in.
  4. BUYER_ID specifies the GLN number of the specific datapool;
    • 2BA: <buyer_id type="gln">8714252005929</buyer_id>
    • InstallData: <buyer_id type="gln">8714252005929</buyer_id>
  5. SUPPLIER_ID is a mandatory field within the datapool. The GLN- or DUNS number is of the specific data supplier is expected;
    • GLN: <buyer_id type="gln"><buyer_id>
    • DUNS: <buyer_id type="duns"><buyer_id>
  7. <UDX.EDXF.VERSION>4.0</UDX.EDXF.VERSION> must be used to define the ETIM 4.0 Guideline version.

Transaction settings

At this moment InstallData only supports complete files of the BMECat 4.0. A complete BMEcat files has to contain all active products. The new file will completely overwrite all records in the database. To define the file as a complete file, use T_NEW_CATALOG. Products which are not present in the file will be set as "expired". Trade items which are not in the file will be deleted.
Delivery of mutation files with T_UPDATE_PRODUCTS is not possible at this moment. We expect to release this feature in 2019.


InstallData distinguishes two entities, the product information and related trade item information. Product information concerns data from the manufacturer about the manufactured product such as attachments and ETIM classification. The related trade item information contains all data indicating how to order the item such as gross price, order unit, minimum purchase amount and delivery time. In many cases (standard manufacturers), this information will be equal to each other, but a distinction can be made here for importers.
SUPPLIER_PID Trade item number
MANUFACTURER_PID Product number (smallest unpacked unit)
INTERNATIONAL_PID type="gtin" GTIN product
Important notes:
1. When UDX.EDXF.GTIN is empty, the INTERNATIONAL_PID type="gtin" will be set as trade item GTIN.


Multiple packing units for the same product

It is possible for a manufacturer or supplier to distribute more than one type of package for the same product. According to the ETIM NL guidelines there are some strict rules:
Important notes:
  2. Every type of package must have an unique SUPPLIER_PID. If there is no unique supplier_PID, fill the GTIN as Supplier_PID.
  3. The structure with package information (UDX.EDXF.PACKING_UNIT) can only be used once per unique trade item number.
  4. Normally, the complete product structure must be given for every unique trade item number (from to ). In case of multiple packing units, there is one exception: when a reference to a MANUFACTURER_PID is used more than once (from more than one SUPPLIER_PIDs), after the first appearance the fields below don’'t have to be given in order to avoid redundant information:
    • Attachments: UDX.EDXF.MIME_INFO
    • ETIM classification: PRODUCT_FEATURES
    • Brand, series, type: will be ignored during the import

Logistic information

For trade items, the logistic information can be given for each unique trade item in the elements UDX.EDXF.PACKING_UNITS, PRODUCT_LOGISTIC_DETAILS and UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC. Measurements must be given in meters and weights must to be given in kilograms. If there are more than one trade items for the same product see chapter Multiple packing units for the same product. The mapping below applies to the packaging information for all trade items:
Important notes:
  1. ETIM has determined that C62 is interpreted as unpacked
  2. ETIM has determined that PA is interpreted as blister
  3. Not recommended by InstallData:
    • BE (Bundle)
    • PR (Pair)
    • SET (set)
    • Z2 (Chest)
    • Z3 (Cask)
The country of origin is the country of shipment of the order. The country of production is the actual production location. Please use the country specific UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC field "Country of production origin" with code "NL_006", see chapter 11 of the ETIM 4.0 guideline.


Order price details

For each trade item can be defined how the trade item can be ordered, on which unit the price is based and how the product can be used. The mapping of the order and price details in the InstallData import of BMEcat 4.0 differs from older guideline versions.
• For ORDER_UNIT and CONTENT_UNIT, the data type must be dtUNIT instead of dtPUNIT. This is correct in the XSD file, but not in the ETIM 4.0 guideline.
• The CONTENT_UNIT defines how the product is used, this can be expressed in piece, meters, litres ad square meters. In case of piece, use code C62.
• The ORDER_UNIT defines how the trade item can be ordered, this can be expressed in piece, meters, litres and square meters. In case of piece, use code C62.
• The QUANTITY_MIN defines the minimum order quantity of the trade item, expressed in ORDER_UNIT. The quantity steps in which the trade item can be ordered is the QUANTITY_INTERVAL.
Applied formulas:

Data model:






Gross price



Gross price per purchase unit



Gross price per content unit



Important notes:
  1. All PRICE_FACTOR elements per SUPPLIER_PID must have the same value.
  2. Gross price: @price_type "net_list" should be used as gross price.
  3. Gross price: @price_type "net_customer" should be used as net price.
  4. TAX will be multiplied with 100.
  5. DAILY_PRICE "true" is mapped as "price on request".
Only the surcharge type "WEEE" is mapped to the Dutch "Afvalbeheersbijdrage".



Given the various purposes, different types of descriptions are possible to describe a trade item or product. There are three possibilities:
  1. DESCRIPTION_SHORT is used as default description. The maximum field length within the data pool is 70 characters (not 150 characters according to the XSD of BMEcat). If the short description contains more characters the description will be cut to length of 70 characters.
  2. DESCRIPTION_LONG is mapped to the marketing text with a maximum of 1.000 characters. If the long description contains more characters, the description will be cut to specified length of 1.000 characters.


    <DESCRIPTION_SHORT lang="dut">BG/SR 611-4/6-0 SM Brievenbus</DESCRIPTION_SHORT>
    <DESCRIPTION_SHORT lang="eng">BG/SR 611-4/6-0 SM Letterbox</DESCRIPTION_SHORT>
    <DESCRIPTION_LONG lang="dut">Vrijstaande brievenbus met staande buis voor de opname van een brievenbus- of opbergvakmodule. 8 moduleplaatsen voor de opname van infobordmodules, vlaklampen en functiemodules in het bovenste deel. Spraakmodule en verdere functiemodules in een ergonomisch gemakkelijk te bedienen bereik. Aluminiumprofiel met bodemflens. Brievenbusbehuizing met aluminium achterwand kompleet met coating resp. gelakt. Kompleet met brievenbusbehuizing, staande buis en bodemflens met bevestigingsaccessoires zoals duvels voor zware lasten etc.</DESCRIPTION_LONG>
    <DESCRIPTION_LONG lang="eng">Free-standing letterbox with standpipes to accommodate a letterbox or storage compartment module. 8 module slots to accommodate info sign modules, surface area lights and function modules in the upper section. Intercom module and additional functional modules within easy ergonomical operating reach. Aluminium profile with base flange. Letterbox housing with aluminium rear panel with complete coating / paintwork finish. Complete with letterbox housing, standpipes and base flange with fixing accessories such as heavy-duty dowels, etc.</DESCRIPTION_LONG>

3. The long description to support the short description is defined in the country specific UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC "Long ERP description" with code "NL_008" and has a maximum of 256 characters.

Important notes:
  1. The descriptions (short, long and long ERP description) should not contain any HTML tags or font formatting like bold, italic, underline, etc.
  2. The descriptions (short, long and long ERP description) should not contain controls characters like CR & LF (Enter / Return), tabs, and other non-western characters.
  3. The element LANGUAGE in the header is used as default language when no language code is specified at descriptions.
  4. The default language is Dutch and is mandatory. If no Dutch description is set, the English description will be adopted as Dutch description.
  5. If neither a Dutch nor an English description is specified the specific record will blocked.
  6. The mapping of the language codes versus InstallData is available here

Brand, serie and type

Wholesalers uses the structure of brand, serie, type as a filtering method and search engine optimisation (SEO), for example on their webshop. For this reason these fields are mandatory for each product record. For records which are only used as trade item data, these fields can be skipped (see chapter: multiple packing units for the same product).

Some manufactures don't use serie and type grouping. In this case use the value RNV_NA. More information click here.

In older BMEcat guidelines there were more mappings and InstallData UDX fields, these fields and mappings are no longer supported.

Hazardous substances and certificates
Safety Data Sheets
When a Safety Data Sheet (SDS) is applicable, these three elements are mandatory:
  1. The indication that SDS is applicable for this product in SPECIAL_TREATMENT_CLASS.
  2. There must be an attachment with code MD03 in UDX.EDXF.MIME.
  3. The SDS listdata must be filled in the UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC with code NL_005.
When Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and restriction of Chemicals (REACH) is applicable for the record, these three elements are mandatory:
  1. The indication that REACH is applicable for this product in UDX.EDXF.REACH.INFO.
  2. The REACH revision date must be filled in the UDX.EDXF.REACH.LISTDATE.
  3. There must be a website location to the document, given as attachment with code MD05 in UDX.EDXF.MIME.
Other certificates and regulations
In the SPECIAL_TREATMENT_CLASS other certificates and regulation codes can be given (see page 65 of the ETIM guidelines). For example the United Nations number is a four digit number, ideally preceded by the letters "UN" (for example, "UN2500"). This number is not mentioned in the ETIM 4.0 Guidelines, InstallData does accept it.
For the maritime sector, the DIN and ISO number is mandatory, using the UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC codes NL_002-1 and NL_002-2. If there are any attachments, the UDX.EDXF.MIME can be used (see page 59 of the ETIM 4.0 guidelines). The DIN number is the German institute for standardisation number. The ISO number is the International Organization for Standardization norm number.


ETIM Classification

The element PRODUCT_FEATURES can be used for the ETIM Classification. REFERENCE_FEATURE_SYSTEM_NAME must be filled with the ETIM version of the data. In the format ETIM-x.x.
  1. REFERENCE_FEATURE_GROUP_ID is the ETIM class of the product. According to the 4.0 guidelines this field is mandatory and must be filled with "EC000000" if the product has no known ETIM class. For InstallData this field is not mandatory.
  2. FNAME is the ETIM Feature. According to the 4.0 guidelines this field is mandatory and must be filled with "EF000000" when there is no feature. For InstallData this field is not mandatory.
  3. FVALUE is the ETIM value. According to the 4.0 guidelines this field is mandatory and must be filled with "EV000000" when there is no feature. For InstallData this field is not mandatory.
  4. In case of a range, the element FVALUE is used twice. InstallData will use the first element as the lowest value, and the second value as the highest.
If a value cannot be assigned, according to the ETIM guideline the data supplier has the opportunity to use a minus sign. Values with a minus sign will be skipped by InstallData. Instead use one of the following reasons in FVALUE_DETAILS:
NA; Not applicable (this feature is not applicable in the context of a product in this class).
MV; Missing value (an alphanumeric feature is relevant, but no correct value exists in this ETIM version).
UN; Unknown (currently, the data supplier is not able to specifiy a value; but basically it is possible).


MIME Information

According to the 4.0 Guidelines the UDX.EDXF.MIME_INFO element should be used to exchange attachments. Because of the different export formats the predefined values (MD codes) are mapped to the attachment type code list.
Important notes:
• If UDX.EDXF.MIME_FILENAME contains an URL, the file will downloaded once and will be saved within the datapool to communicate with the data consumers.
UDX.EDXF.MIME_DESIGNATION specifies if an attachment is in high resolution (detail) or low resolution (normal) picture.
• The minimum quality of a high resulution should be 300 DPI for 1772x1772 pixels (15x15cm). If UDX.EDXF.MIME_DESIGNATION is not specified, the picture will be saved as a low resolution picture.
• If only a high resolution (detail) MD01 picture is specified, the import system will generate a low resolution picture.
• The MIME_ROOT can define a root map for attachments. This field is used in combination with UDX.EDXF.MIME_SOURCE. Be careful not to use the same directory structure in both fields.
• The UDX.EDXF.MIME_SOURCE is used for the file name or URL. When the value starts with an URL, the import system will download the attachment.
• The UDX.EDXF.MIME_FILENAME will be imported as title of the attachment.
• The UDX.EDXF.MIME_CODE defines the type of attachment with MD codes.
• If the MIME_CODE MD04 is specified the MIME_Source will be saved as deeplink.
MD06, Energy label must be a JPG. In InstallData mapped to certificates, with attribute "ENERGY".
MD36 (declaration) is deleted by ETIM in the 4.0 Guidelines.
MD47 (thumbnail) is not imported by InstallData.
MD55 and MD56 are missing in the XSD but can be used.

Reference items

In the data model reference items will be mapped at product level, not on trade item level. The table below displays the mapping from BMECat 2005 4.0 to the 2BA data modal:
BMEcat code: BMEcat description: Datamodel code: Datamodel description: Datamodel description:
accessories Accessories BE2 Belongs to
simular Similar product COM Alternative
consists of Component part CON Contains part
others i.c.m. "fits to" Other reference type >> fits to FI2 Technical fit
followup Follow-up successor PCH Successor
mandatory Mandatory additional product KNZ Can not without
select Selectable mandatory product KNZ Can not without
sparepart Spare part RES Spare
base_product Base product no mapping no mapping
others Others no mapping no mapping
Important notes:
• BMEcat code "others" can only be used in combination with REFERENCE_DESCR "fits to".
• BMEcat code "Base product" is used for hierarchy, see chapter 10. hierarchy.
• BMEcat code "Followup" can be used to refer to a successor at product level (not for articles).


Files containing data from multiple data suppliers

• In case of catalogue messages containing products of more than one manufacturer, on every product the field the country specific UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC field "Manufacturer_IDref" with code "NL_010" must be used, see chapter 11.
• In case of a multi supplier catalogue, every trade item needs to be identified with the GLN of the supplier, the field the country specific UDX.EDXF.PRODUCT_CHARACTERISTIC field "Supplier_IDref" with code "NL_009" must be used, see chapter 11.
• When a multi catalogue message contains multiple suppliers of the same product, redundant product information should be avoided. The ETIM classification and "mime info" should only be added the first time it is mentioned in the catalogue. The function PRODUCT_REFERENCE "base_product" must be used on all the other trade items elements which refer to the same product.

Country of production origin

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