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HQ 733195

April 16, 1990

MAR-2-05 CO:R:C:V 733195 NL


Richard H. Simpson
W.G. Carroll & Co., Inc.
185 East Bay Street, Suite 204
P.O. Box 685
Charleston, S.C. 29407

RE: Marking Requirements - Disposable Surgical Blades

Dear Mr. Simpson:

This is in response to your letter of March 16, 1990, on behalf of your client, Professional Medical Products, Inc., in which you request an exception from the requirements of section 134.46, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.46).


The articles in question are disposable surgical blades manufactured in the United Kingdom and imported by your client. Each blade is packed in a sterile foil wrapper. The wrapped blades are packed in boxes containing 150 blades, and you represent that the blades are sold only by the box and not individually. The outside of the box is marked "Made in England" by means of a sticker. Each blade is marked by engraving with the word "England". The foil wrapper which encloses each blade, however, has no country of origin marking but does contain the words "Distr. by Seamless Hosp. Prod. Co. Wallingford Ct."

On February 5, 1990, Customs officials at Charleston, South Carolina, determined that the marking on the foil blade was in violation of 19 CFR 134.46, in that the name of a U.S. location (Wallingford, Connecticut) was not accompanied in close proximity by a clear indication of the country of origin of the blade, as required by that section. For the shipment in question a waiver was granted, but you were advised that for future shipments a ruling from Customs Headquarters granting an exception would be required.

In support of your request for relief from the country of origin marking requirements for the disposable blades extending through December 31, 1990, you state the following: 1) the importer believed that with the marking on the box and the engraving on the blade the marking was adequate, and there was no
intent to avoid the marking requirements; 2) the manufacturer in the United Kingdom, Paragon Razor Company, has already taken steps to remedy the marking defect by the design of a new package; and 3) Paragon has already produced over one million blades which are already packed in foil, and since the value of each blade is one cent, it would be economically prohibitive to mark each foil wrapper with the country of origin. This stock will not be depleted until the end of the fourth quarter of 1990.

Accordingly, you request a limited exception for shipments imported into the U.S. through the end of 1990.


Inasmuch as there appears to have been no attempt to avoid the requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134, and because the cost of marking the foil wrapper of each blade in accordance with the requirements of 19 CFR 134.46 would be substantial in relation to the cost of each blade, we find that the case for an exception has been substantiated. Pursuant to 19 CFR 134.32(c) and 134.32(o), the blades already packaged by Paragon Razor Company are eligible for an exception from country of origin marking with respect to noncompliance with 19 CFR 134.46. This eligibility should extend through December 31, 1990.

To facilitate the entry process a copy of this ruling should be attached to the entry documents.


Marvin M. Amernick
Chief, Value, Special Programs

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