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HQ 082815

July 12, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 082815 JBW


TARIFF NO.: 3913.10.0000

Mr. L. L. Barnhart
Manager, Import Section
Transportation Department
Hercules Incorporated
Hercules Plaza
Wilmington, DE 19894

RE: Classification of Propylene Glycol Alginate

Dear Mr. Barnhart:

Your letter of August 12, 1988, on behalf of Hercules Incorporated, addressed to our New York office, has been referred to this office for reply concerning the classification of propylene glycol alginate under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


Propylene glycol alginate is a single compound formed when alginic acid, derived from brown seaweed, is reacted with propylene oxide. The resulting compound falls within a number of functional groups, namely esters, ethers, and unreacted free acids. Propylene glycol alginate has many properties that give it a wide range of applications, particularly in the food industry.


What is the appropriate classification for propylene glycol alginate under the HTSUSA?


The General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) set forth the manner in which merchandise is to be classified under the HTSUSA. GRI 1 requires that classification be determined first according to the terms of the headings of the tariff and any relative section or chapter notes and, unless otherwise required, according to the remaining GRI's, taken in order.

The HTSUSA provides for classification of alginic acid, its salts and esters, under subheading 3913.10.00. The Explanatory Notes, the official interpretation of the HTSUSA at the international level, include propylene glycol alginate as an ester of alginic acid. The Explanatory Notes, therefore, specifically provide for classification of propylene glycol alginate under this heading.


Propylene glycol alginate is classified under subheading 3913.10.00, HTSUSA, as a natural polymer, alginic acid, its salts and esters, with a duty of 4.2 percent ad valorem.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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