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April 14, 1999

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:SP:225 D89555


TARIFF NO.: 9502.10.0010; 9505.10.2500

Mr. William A. Vollmerhausen
Kmart Corporation
Resource Center
3100 West Big Beaver Road
Troy, MI 48084-3163

RE: The tariff classification of assorted wreaths from China

Dear Mr. Vollmerhausen:

In your letter dated March 16, 1999, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

An assortment of decorative wreaths was submitted to this office for review. All the wreaths measure 13 inches in diameter, are made of rattan and feature a stuffed doll figure that is permanently attached inside the wreath. The figures depict either a boy or girl and measure 15 inches in length. Each wreath is decorated with styrofoam pumpkins and corn, natural straw, artificial foliage and a wooden sign with a printed greeting. Differences within the assortment may be attributed to the expressions printed on the wooden signs of the wreaths. Designs #1 and #6 indicate “Greetings,” designs #2 and #4 convey “Merry Christmas” and designs #3 and #5 are marked “Welcome.” The wreaths are intended to be hung from a loop tied at the top.

Items traditionally used in celebration of, and for entertainment on, a given holiday may qualify as a festive article, provided certain requirements are met. Factors warranting consideration in making this determination include, among other things, the intended use of the product, relationship to a recognized holiday, basic physical characteristics and marketing of the merchandise. In the Informed Compliance Handbook on the Classification of Festive Articles, dated November 1997, various motifs were listed which were identified as accepted symbols for Christmas. It was further indicated that the stated symbols were not definitive and that additional motifs would be added. The slogan “Merry Christmas” is so closely linked with Christmas, a recognized holiday, that it will be accepted as an additional accepted symbol of that holiday.

The remaining wreaths which relate messages of “Greetings” and “Welcome” are not necessarily associated with any particular occasion and may be displayed in one’s home throughout the year. Therefore, these wreaths do not fall within the festive article provision. Upon review of the General Rules of Interpretation, we find GRI 3(b) applicable in this case. Specifically, GRI 3(b) states in part that "composite goods consisting of different materials or made up of different components which cannot be classified by reference to 3(a), shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character". This office finds the essential character of the subject wreaths to be imparted by the doll figure.

The applicable subheading for the “13" Rattan Wreaths” displaying the phrases “Greetings” or “Welcome,” designs #1, #3, #5, and #6, will be 9502.10.0010, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for dolls representing only human beings and parts and accessories thereof: whether or not dressed: stuffed. The rate of duty will be free.

The applicable subheading for the “13" Rattan Wreath” displaying a “Merry Christmas” sign, designs #2 and #4, will be 9505.10.2500, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for festive...articles for Christmas festivities and parts and accessories thereof: Christmas ornaments: other, other. The rate of duty will be free.

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

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Alice J. Wong at 212-637-7028.


Robert B. Swierupski

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