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HQ 960767

January 15, 1998

CLA-2 RR:TC:TE 960767 SG


TARIFF NO.: 5806.32.1090

Rita Powell
FTD, Inc.
3113 Woodcreek Drive
Downers Grove, Il 60515-5420

RE: Classification of ribbon with hems at both ends; Heading 6307 made up articles,
Heading 5806 narrow woven fabrics

Dear Ms. Powell:

This is in response to your letter of July 8, 1997, regarding the proper classification of ribbon sold to individual florists for their use in floral arrangements under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). You submitted a sample with your request for a binding ruling.


The article at issue is made in China. It is a woven 100% nylon ribbon which is 2 inches wide and 36 feet long. A thin support metal wire is sewn into the ribbon along each of its lengthwise edges. The wires allow the ribbon to be bent, folded, and shaped for decorating purposes. The ribbon will be sold in lengths of 36 feet and cut to length before being used in floral arrangements. In addition, the ribbon features overlock stitching which forms a hem on all four sides. This stitching prevents the ribbon from unravelling until cut for use.


Whether the ribbon is classifiable in heading 6307 as other made up articles or heading 5806 as narrow woven fabric.


Classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedules of the United States (HTSUS) is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 provides that classification is determined in accordance with the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes.

Where goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, the remaining rules will be applied in sequential order.

The Explanatory Notes (EN's) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System assist us in the classification of merchandise. The EN's constitute the official interpretation of the nomenclature at the international level. While not legally binding, they represent the considered views of classification experts of the Harmonized System committee. It has been the practice of the Customs Service to follow, whenever possible, the terms of the EN's when interpreting the HTSUS. In Treasury Decision (T.D.) 89-80, Customs stated that the EN's should always be consulted as guidance when classifying merchandise. (See T.D. 89-80, quoting from a report of the Joint Committee on the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988, 23 Cust. Bull. 379 (1989), 54 Fed. Reg. 35,127 (August 23, 1989)).

You suggest that the sample ribbon is properly classifiable under Heading 6307, HTSUSA. That heading reads "Other made up articles, including dress patterns". The wording of the heading requires that merchandise, to be classifiable thereunder, (1) not be classifiable elsewhere; (2) be "made up" within the terms of Section XI, Note 7, HTSUSA; and (3) be an article (as opposed to being piece goods).

The second criterion for classification is governed by Note 7 to Section XI, HTSUSA, which states, in pertinent part:

7. For the purposes of this Section, the expression "made up" means:
(c) Hemmed or with rolled edges, or with a knotted fringe at any of the edges, but excluding fabrics, the cut edges of which have been prevented from unravelling by whipping or by other simple means;
A thin support wire has been sewn into the ribbon along each of its lengthwise edges. In addition, the ribbon features overlock stitching which forms a hem on each end to prevent the ribbon from unravelling until cut to use. As the overlock stitching is present merely for the purpose of preventing the fabric from unravelling, the ribbon, as represented by the sample, does not qualify as "made up" within the terms of Note 7, Section XI. Therefore, it is not classifiable under Heading 6307.

Heading 5806 provides for narrow woven fabrics. The EN's to 5806 indicate that the heading includes, inter alia, ribbons of man-made fibers which may be used "in women's apparel, in the manufacture of hats and fancy collars, as medal ribbons, as a decorative binding material, in furnishing, etc." The sample ribbon is to be cut to size and used as a decorative binding for floral arrangements. It is therefore classifiable within heading 5806. As the ribbon is composed of man-made fibers, the appropriate subheading is 5806.32.1090, HTSUSA.


The nylon woven fabric ribbon is classifiable in subheading 5806.32.1090, HTSUSA, which provides for, inter alia, "Narrow woven fabrics, other than goods of heading 5807; . . .: Other woven fabrics: Of man-made fibers: Ribbons: Other." The general column one rate of duty is 7.8 percent ad valorem. Articles classifiable in subheading 5806.32.1090, HTSUSA, fall within the textile category designation 229.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification ) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories applicable to textile merchandise, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent negotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is updated weekly and is available at your local Customs office.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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