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 0083676 - HQ 0083791 > HQ 0083749

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

HQ 083749

June 5,1989
CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 083749 JGH
Tariff No. 2939.90.40
Ms. Dee Dee Benda
Henley Chemicals Inc.
50 Chestnut Ridge Rd
Montvale, New Jersey 07645

RE: Classification of Pilocarpine.

Dear Ms. Benda:

Your letter of February 13, 1989, concerns the tariff classification of natural pilocarpine, pilocarpine hydrochloride, and pilocarpine nitrate.


Pilocarpine is said to be extracted, through a series of steps, from dried crushed leaves of pilocarpus microphyllus, or other suitable pilocarpus species. The free pilocarpine is reacted with dilute hydrochloric acid to produce pilocarpine hydrochloride.


Whether pilocarpine salts produced from naturally occurring pilocarpine are classifiable under the provision for natural vegetable alkaloids and their salts in subheading 2939.90.10, HTSUS, or other than natural alkaloids in subheading 2939.90.50, HTSUS.


Classification under the HTSUS is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 provides that classification is determined first in accordance with the headings and the relative Section or Chapter notes.

It is understood that pilocarpine hydrochloride is produced by reacting natural pilocarpine with hydrochloric acid thus producing the salt, pilocarpine hydrochloride. Heading 2939, HTSUS, provides for vegetable alkaloids, natural or reproduced by synthesis, and their salts, ethers, esters, and
other derivatives. Subheading note 1 to Chapter 29 provides that derivatives of a chemical compound are to be classified in the same subheading as the compound provided that they are not more specifically covered by any other subheading and that there is no residual subheading named "Other" in the series of subheadings concerned. The Explanatory Notes to heading 2939, HTSUS, specifically include pilocarpine among the vegetable alkaloids and their derivatives and salts.

Although pilocarpine, in this case, is a naturally occurring alkaloid, the hydrochloride and nitrate forms would be considered synthetic derivatives of natural pilocarpine. Accordingly, application of GRI 1 and the relative Chapter notes to the hydrochloride and nitrate forms of pilocarpine results in their being classified in subheading 2939.90.50, HTSUS.

Presidential Proclamation No. 5885, effective October 31, 1988, imposed a duty of 100 percent ad valorem on certain pharmaceutical products of Brazil. Included in subheading 9903.42.05, HTSUS, are vegetable alkaloids reproduced by synthesis and their salts, ethers, esters and other derivatives, the foregooing not specially provided for (provided for in subheading 2939.90.50)


Pilocarpine, a naturally occurring alkaloid, is classifiable as a natural occurring vegetable alkaloid in subheading 2939.90.10, HTSUS. The rate of duty is 1.8 percent ad valorem.

Pilocarpine hydrochloride and pilocarpine nitrate are classifiable under the provision for other vegetable alkaloids reproduced by synthesis in subheading 2939.90.50, HTSUS. Products of Brazil classifiable under this subheading are subject to a 100 percent rate of duty pursuant to Presidential Proclamation No. 5885.


John Durant, Director

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: