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NY E87963

November 23, 1999

CLA-2-16:RR:NC:2:231 E87963


TARIFF NO.: 1602.90.9080

Mr. James Reynolds
John A. Steer Company
28 South Second Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

RE: The tariff classification and status under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) of seasoned rack of lamb from Canada; Article 509

Dear Mr. Reynolds:

In your letter, dated October 4, 1999, you requested a classification ruling on behalf of your client, the New Zealand Lamb Company.

The merchandise is comprised of seasoned rack of lamb that has been produced in Canada from lamb loins shipped to Canada from New Zealand or Australia.

The product arrives in Canada as a long loin in a frozen state. The frozen long loin is sawed into two pieces - the short loin and the rack. The rack portion (which weighs 32 ounces) is then sent through a saw where the chine bones and feather bones are cut off the backbone. All exterior fat is trimmed with a knife, and the intercostal is trimmed (frenched) from in between each rib. This procedure reduces the weight of the rack by 50 percent. The product is then thawed to a tempered state – although it is not thawed completely, it is no longer hard frozen. The frenched rack is then sent to a vat where it is dipped in Canola oil coating it completely. The rack is then sent through an automatic tumbler where a mixture of seasonings and spices (salt, garlic, rosemary, thyme, black pepper, and sesame sees) are applied to the exterior of the rack. The product is frozen and packaged.

The General Note to Chapter 16, Explanatory Notes, states that Chapter 16 “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” and then examples of Chapter 16 products are enumerated. General Note (3) to Chapter 16, EN, articulates that products that have been seasoned with both pepper and salt are embraced within the scope of Chapter 16: “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.”

The submitted sample is virtually covered with a visible coating of spices. This amount of seasoning constitutes a level of processing not included in products of Chapter 2. Accordingly, the product is classifiable in Chapter 16, HTS.

The applicable subheading for seasoned rack of lamb 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 general rate of duty will be 7 percent ad valorem.

Each of the non-originating materials used to make the seasoned rack of lamb has satisfied the changes in tariff classification required under HTSUSA General Notes 12(b)(ii)(A) and 12(t)/16. Upon compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and agreements under NAFTA, articles from Canada classifiable in subheading 1602.90.9080, HTS, will be subject to a free rate of duty.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 181 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 181).

This ruling letter is binding only as to the party to whom it is issued and may be relied on only by that party.

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 Thomas Brady at 212-637-7064.


Robert B. Swierupski

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