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 0086453 - HQ 0086580 > HQ 0086528

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

HQ 086528

March 28, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 086528 CRS


TARIFF NO.: 6310.10.2010; 6310.90.2000

Robert T. Stack, Esq.
Tompkins & Davidson
One Whitehall Street
New York, NY 10004

RE: Classification of Used Terry Towels

Dear Mr. Stack:

This is in reply to your letter dated January 23, 1990, to our New York office, on behalf of your client, Fab Tech, Inc., concerning the classification of used terry towels. Samples of the towels were submitted with your request.


The merchandise at issue consists of used towels purchased from suppliers in France, Germany, Holland and Belgium, and imported through various ports including Baltimore, Houston and Philadelphia.

The towels are purchased in lots of colored towels, white towels, or mixed white and colored towels. All have been subjected to repeated washings and exhibit signs of wear such as fading, stains, minor tears and fraying. Specifically, the towels consist of the following:

White or Mixed Towels

1. Solid white, 49 inches x 34 inches, worn and thinning, with several minor holes and frayed on all edges;

2. Solid white, 28 inches x 25 inches, frayed on three edges, worn and with a large tear;

3. Striped, 36 inches x 17 inches, one stain and frayed on one edge;

4. Striped, 35 inches x 18 inches, faded and with several holes;

5. Striped, 38 inches x 19 inches, faded.

Colored Towels

1. Blue floral pattern, 35 inches x 17 inches, stained, frayed and with several holes;

2. Blue stripe, 35 inches x 18 inches, dirty;

3. Orange, pink and green floral pattern, 29 inches x 19 inches, with several holes;

4. Green and white stripe, 33 inches x 17 inches, dirty;

5. Orange, 40 inches x 18 inches, faded, dirty and with holes.

The towels are purchased from rag sorting companies in Western Europe which grade merchandise according to industry standards, and have been determined to be so worn as not to qualify as second grade toweling. The towels are imported in bales of approximately 100 kilograms each and are sold by Fab Tech to wholesalers which supply industrial wipers to industry in the United States.


Whether the articles in question are classifiable as rags in heading 6310, HTSUSA.


Heading 6310, HTSUSA, covers, inter alia, used and new rags. According to the Explanatory Notes, which constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System at the international level (four and six digits), rags of heading 6310
may consist of articles of furnishing or clothing or of other old textile articles so worn out, soiled or torn as to be beyond cleaning or repair, or of new small cuttings (e.g., dressmakers' or tailors' snippings).

To fall in the heading, these products must be worn, dirty or torn, or in small pieces. They are generally fit only for recovery (e.g., by pulling) of the fibers (which are usually re-spun), for the manufacture of paper or plastics, for the manufacture of polishing materials (e.g., polishing wheels), or for use as industrial wipers (e.g., machine wipers).

The towels at issue are all either worn, dirty or torn. Many have holes or frayed edges, while others are stained. The towels are not suitable for use as face or bath towels, therefore, it is Customs' view that the towels in question are beyond practicable or commercially feasible repair. Since the merchandise at issue is dirty and torn, and beyond repair, it meets the requirements for classification in heading 6310, HTSUSA.


The articles in question, if sorted, are classifiable in subheading 6310.10.2010, HTSUSA, under the provision for used or new rags...of textile materials, sorted, other, of cotton. If imported unsorted, the articles in question are classifiable in subheading 6310.90.2000, HTSUSA, under the provision for used or new rags...of textile materials, other, other. Articles in these subheadings are duty-free.


Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: