United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 1990 HQ Rulings > HQ 0081888 - HQ 0082053 > HQ 0081903

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

HQ 081903

November 25, 1988

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 081903 DSN


TARIFF NO.: 5703.30.0090

Ms. Sandra Liss Friedman
Barnes, Richardson & Colburn
475 Park Avenue South
New York, New York 10016

RE: Tariff classification of artificial grass

Dear Ms. Friedman:

This letter is in response to your inquiry of November 20, 1987, on behalf of your client, Supercourt Int'l., Inc., in which you requested tariff classification of artificial grass under the proposed Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). Your request was referred to this office for a direct reply. Two samples produced in Canada were submitted for examination.


Both samples of artificial grass submitted are intended to be used to cover indoor and outdoor athletic surfaces. One sample is in its unfinished form, while the other is in a finished form.

The unfinished form consists of a woven man-made fiber fabric of polypropylene, which has been tufted with short lengths of fibrillated strips which have a width of less than 5 mm where inserted or knotted. These fibrillated strips extend approximately three quarters of an inch outward from the surface of the woven fabric.

The grass in its finished form consists of the same two components as described above, with the addition of a latex coating on the reverse side of the fabric which serves to hold the tufting in place.


What is the proper classification of artificial grass under the HTSUSA?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification is determined according to the terms of the headings and any relevant section or chapter notes. Heading 5703 provides for carpets and other textile floor coverings, tufted. Note 1 to Chapter 57 defines the term "carpets and other textile floor coverings" to mean floor coverings in which textile materials serve as the exposed surface of the article when in use and includes articles having the characteristics of textile floor coverings but intended for use for other purposes. With respect to the instant merchandise, the tufted fibrillated man-made fiber strips serve as the exposed surface of the grass when used on either an indoor or outdoor athletic field.

The Explanatory Notes constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System at the international level. The Explanatory Notes to Chapter 57 state that floor coverings characteristically must have thickness, stiffness and strength. Otherwise, they would be unsuitable as floor coverings. It is obvious that this merchandise possesses thickness, stiffness and strength because it is specially designed for use on athletic surfaces, which require such features. Therefore, by applying GRI 1, classification of this merchandise is under heading 5703, HTSUSA, which provides for other textile floor coverings.

We note that this merchandise is similar to floor coverings and is not to be confused with articles having the characteristics of textile floor coverings intended for other uses. General Explanatory Note 1 to Chapter 57 refers to articles having the characteristics of textile floor coverings, but intended for use for other purposes such as wall hangings or table covers or for other furnishing purposes. The Note is describing alternative uses for floor coverings which are of a household or decorative nature, whereas, the artificial grass at issue is intended for recreational or athletic uses.


In view of the foregoing, the two forms of artificial grass are properly classified under subheading 5703.30.0090, HTSUSA,
which provides for carpets, and other textile floor coverings, tufted, of other man-made textile materials, other, textile category 665, dutiable at the rate of 7.6 percent ad valorem. This classification decision is under the HTSUSA, effective January 1, 1989, subject to changes before the effective date.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: