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NY 858549

December 10, 1990



TARIFF NO.: 1602.90.9080

Ms. Loraine K. Feith, Regulatory Officer
New Zealand Trade Development Board
New Zealand Embassy
37 Observatory Circle
Washington, D.C. 20008

RE: The tariff classification of VENISON JERKY from New Zealand.

Dear Ms. Feith:

In your letter dated November 28, 1990, you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of Broadleaf Venison Ltd. of New Zealand.
VENISON JERKY consists of one quarter ounce strips approximately centimeters wide (about 1 inch), 16 centimeters long (about 6 inches), and 3 millimeters thick (about one-eighth inch). This product is processed from farm raised venison which is first ground and then marinated in a Tamari-based mixture. The marinade consists of Tamari soy sauce (made from water, soy beans and sea salt), red wine, malt vinegar, turbinado sugar, onion flakes, ground mustard seed, garlic flakes, ground ginger, juniper berries, bay leaves, sea salt, pepper, and onion powder. After marinating, the ground venison is formed into strips and slowly dried. After drying, the strips are packed in individual labeled cellophane wrappers, and further packed into display boxes of thirty-two pieces. These display boxes are then packed six to a master carton. Finally, six master cartons are packed into each shipping carton.

You state in your letter that you have been informally advised that this product may be classifiable in subheading 0210.90.4000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), under the provision for Meat and edible offal, salted, in brine, dried or smoked; edible flours and meals of meat or meat offal. We would disagree with this classification. The "General" Notes on page 123 of the Explanatory notes to Chapter 16, state, in part, that "[t]his Chapter covers prepared foodstuffs obtained by processing meat, meat offal (e.g., feet, skins, hearts, tongues, livers, guts, stomachs), blood, fish (including skins thereof), crustaceans, molluscs or other aquatic invertebrates.. The Chapter covers such products which have been prepared or preserved by processes not provided for in Chapter 2 or 3, for example, products which have been:

(3) Prepared or preserved in the form of extracts, juices or marinades, prepared from fish eggs, as caviar or caviar substitutes, merely covered with batter or bread crumbs, truffled, seasoned (e.g., with both pepper and salt), etc.".
(Boldface supplied.)

"The American College Dictionary", edited by C.L. Barnhart, Editor in Chief, (Copyright: 1970, by Random House, Inc.) defines the word season as a transitive verb meaning, inter alia, "[t]o heighten or improve the flavor of (food) by adding condiments, spices, herbs, or the like." In our opinion, the seasoning of the ground venison in the marinade creates a product which has been processed beyond those levels of processing permitted by the headings of Chapters 2 and 3. Accordingly, classification of this product in Chapter 2 would be precluded.

The applicable subheading for this VENISON JERKY will be 1602.90.9080, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for Other prepared or preserved meat, meat offal or blood:...Other, including preparations of blood of any animal:...Other...Other. The rate of duty will be 10 percent ad valorem.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


Jean F. Maguire
Area Director

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