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HQ 956684

October 12, 1994
CLA-2 CO:R:C:F 956684 JGH


TARIFF NO.: 0406.10.1000

John N. Politis, Esq.
Politis, Pollack & Doram
3255 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 1688
Los Angeles, California 90010

Dear Mr. Politis:

Your letter of July 1, 1994, concerns the classification of "Chongos", a cheese dessert; a product of Mexico.


The product is described as a caramel colored, semi-solid product with a sweet taste and having a smooth consistency when mixed; it is said to consist of curdled cow's milk (with the enzyme rennet added), sugar, and bits of cinnamon sticks; by weight it contains milk curd -64.87%, refined sugar - 35%, cinnamon - 0.10%, and rennet-0.03%. A laboratory analysis of a sample was said to reveal that the curd portion contained 35.6 percent moisture, 7.1 percent fat (11 percent fat on a dry basis).

In a ruling on this product in 1989 (NYRL 846287), Chongos was classified under the provision for Fresh cheese (including whey cheese), not fermented, and curd, in subheading 0406.10.0050, HTSUS, and subject to the quota restraints of subheading 9904.10.54, HTSUS.


Classification and quota status of Chongos under NAFTA


You point out that subsequent to the 1989 ruling, a eo nomine provision was created for Chongos - 0406.10.100, HTSUS. It is your view that as the cheese is not a blue mold cheese, American or European style cheese or cheese substitutes, it is not a cheese subject to the quota in U.S. Note 8, Subchapter VI, Chapter 99, HTSUS. - 2 -

However, Note 8 is far more inclusive a quota than that. It is specifically designed for dairy products of Mexico entered under the provisions of NAFTA. The cheese categories listed in this quota parallel the headings of 0406 and are obviously designed to cover virtually all of cow's milk cheese, even those containing less than 0.5 percent butterfat. Since this is a cow's milk cheese with a butter fat content of 11.1%, on a dry basis, it clearly falls under the quota set forth in U.S. Note 8. In fact, subheading 9906.04.81 is one of the provisions listed in the quota to cover a product of cow's milk .

Since quota limitations on imported dairy products are established pursuant to section 22 of the Agricultural Act, as amended, if you disagree with our conclusion on the quota status of this cheese, it is suggested that you submit to this office, a written statement from the Head of the Dairy, Livestock and Poultry Division, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, stating that Chongos is not subject to quota restraints. Upon receipt of such a letter we would review our position on the quota issue.


Chongos, a cheese dessert, is classifiable in subheading 0406.10.1000, HTSUS, and, as a product of Mexico, under 9906.04.81, is free of duty and, since it is made from cow's milk, subject to the quota restraints of U.S. Note 8, Subchapter, VI, Chapter 99, HTSUS.


John Durant, Director

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