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HQ 086762

January 22, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G DRR 086762


TARIFF NO.: 6309.00.0020

Mr. Harvey A. Isaacs
Tompkins & Davidson
One Whitehall Street
New York, New York 10004

RE: Used huck roller towels

Dear Mr. Isaacs:

This is in reference to your letter dated February 21, 1990, on behalf of Fab-Tech, Inc., requesting the classification of used huck roller towels under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


The merchandise at issue consists of used huck roller cotton toweling. The toweling measures approximately 11.5 inches by 40 yards, with selvages along the lengthwise sides and a hem along one or both width sides. According to your letter, this toweling has been used and laundered repeatedly and, at the time of purchase by Fab-Tech, Inc., has been graded as lacking the absorbency sufficient to meet industry standards for first or second quality toweling. The toweling will be imported in bales of about 100 units. They will be imported from France, Holland, Belgium, West Germany and possibly Italy and Austria. The used roller toweling is sold in uncut condition to companies that supply industrial wipers. The rolls will be cut by subsequent dealers or the ultimate consumers of the toweling.

In your letter you state that you believe that the toweling is classifiable under Heading 6310, HTSUSA, as used rags, of cotton or alternatively under Heading 6309, HTSUSA, as worn clothing.


What is the proper classification of the merchandise at issue?


Classification under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. Heading 6302, HTSUSA, provides for bed linen, table linen, toilet linen and kitchen linen. Heading 6307, HTSUSA, provides for other made up articles. Note 3(a) iii, Chapter 63, indicates that the articles of textile materials to which heading 6309 applies include bed linen, table linen, toilet linen and kitchen linen.

The Explanatory Notes to the Harmonized System may be consulted for guidance as to the correct interpretation of the various HTSUSA provisions at the international level. The Explanatory Notes for heading 6302 state that articles of that heading include toilet linen, e.g., hand or face towels (including roller towels), bath towels, beach towels, face cloths and toilet gloves. The Explanatory Notes for heading 6307 state that it does not include articles which are more specifically provided for in other headings of the Nomenclature. Inasmuch as roller towels are more specifically provided for in heading 6302 as toilet linen, heading 6307 is eliminated from consideration.

Having determined the classification of new toweling, the remaining question concerns the classification of the goods in the condition in which they are imported. The Explanatory Notes for heading 6310 state that rags 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). 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 Explanatory Notes for heading 6309 state that in order to be classified under that heading, articles must show signs of appreciable wear and must be presented in bulk.

According to your submission, samples of this toweling have been examined by Herbert J. Barndt, an associate professor at the Philadelphia College of Textiles. Professor Brandt's analysis of the material indicated that at least some
of it is not beyond repair and cleaning, although he stated that the remaining useful life was of no economic value. It is also the opinion of Customs that not all of the material presented as samples was beyond repair and cleaning. Therefore the toweling in question is properly classifiable in heading 6309.


The used roller toweling in question is classified under subheading 6309.00.0020, HTSUSA, as worn clothing and other used articles, other, with a duty rate of 1.8 percent ad valorem.

However, this ruling is limited is scope and applies only to the sample merchandise. General Note 5, HTSUSA, provides that whenever goods subject to different rates of duty are so packed together or mingled that the quantity or value of each class of goods cannot be readily ascertained by Customs officers (without physical segregation of the shipment or the contents of any entire package thereof), by sampling, verification of packing lists or other documents filed at the time of entry, or evidence showing performance of commercial settlement tests generally accepted in the trade and filed in such time and manner as may be prescribed by regulations of the Secretary of the Treasury, the comingled goods shall be subject to the highest rate of duty applicable to any part thereof unless the consignee or his agent segregates the goods.

As a result, if some of the imported articles are not soiled, torn or worn beyond cleaning or repair, the imported merchandise could be considered comingled and, therefore, classified as towels.


John Durant, Director

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