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August 13, 1999

CLA-2-39:RR:NC:SP:221 E85008


TARIFF NO.: 3926.90.9880

Mr. Ron Blackwell
International Pheromone Systems Limited
Units 10 – 15 Meadow Lane
Meadow Lane Industrial Estate
Ellesmere Port, South Wirral
L65 4TY, England

RE: The tariff classification and country of origin marking of moth traps from England

Dear Mr. Blackwell:

In your letter dated July 20, 1999, you requested a tariff classification and marking ruling.

The moth traps, consisting of five plastic pieces, will be imported unassembled. The traps are imported without pheromones.

The applicable subheading for the traps will be 3926.90.9880, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other articles of plastics, other. The rate of duty will be 5.3 percent ad valorem.

You have also inquired about the country of origin marking requirements. The traps are packaged five hundred traps, consisting of twenty five hundred component pieces, to each carton. At present, only the cartons are marked with the country of origin. You propose that in the future the lids of the traps, though not the other four pieces, will also be marked.

Section 304 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the United States shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly, and permanently as the nature of the article (or container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to an ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article.

The primary purpose of the country of origin marking statute is to "mark the goods so that at the time of purchase the ultimate purchaser may, by knowing where the goods were produced, be able to buy or refuse to buy them, if such marking should influence his will." United States v. Friedlaender & Co., 27 C.C.P.A. 297, 302, C.A.D. 104 (1940).

The ultimate purchaser of the traps is the farmer or other individual who will use the traps to catch the insects. Therefore, marking on the carton alone is not sufficient unless the ultimate purchaser receives full carton lots. Marking the cartons in which the trap components are imported and sold to the ultimate purchaser in lieu of marking the components themselves is acceptable marking only when the port director is satisfied that the components will remain in the marked containers until they reach the ultimate purchaser.

In most cases, the traps will not reach the ultimate purchaser in the original marked cartons. Section 134.34, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.34), provides that an exception may be authorized at the discretion of the port director under 19 CFR 134.32(d) for imported articles which are to be repacked after release from Customs custody under the following conditions: (1) The containers in which the articles are repacked will indicate the origin of the articles to an ultimate purchaser in the U.S.; (2) The importer arranges for supervision of the marking of the containers by Customs officers at the importer's expense or secures such verification, as may be necessary, by certification and the submission of a sample or otherwise, of the marking prior to the liquidation of the entry.

In this case, if the port director is satisfied that the trap components will be repacked in the manner described above, and that the other conditions set forth in 19 CFR 134.34 are met, the port director may authorize an exception under 19 CFR 134.32(d).

You propose incorporating the legend “Made in U.K” on the logo impress of the lid. The lid is a necessary part of each trap. The marking on the lid, provided it is legible and conspicuous, will be sufficient to indicate that the traps are made in England. Therefore, it is not necessary to individually mark all five parts of the traps.

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 Joan Mazzola at 212-637-7034.


Robert B. Swierupski

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