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NY F86664

May 24, 2000

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:SP:225 F86664


TARIFF NO.: 9505.90.2000; 9503.90.0045; 9503.49.0025

Ms. Marjorie Shapiro
Samuel Shapiro & Company, Inc.
The Corn Exchange Building Suite 400
123 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

RE: The tariff classification of practical joke items, a toy and toy creatures from China

Dear Ms. Shapiro:

In your letter dated May 1, 2000 you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of Unique Industries, Inc.

Five articles were submitted for our review. The first item #G001 is for “Magic Disappearing Ink.” contained within a 3” plastic jar and packaged on a blister card. Instructions on the jar direct the user to pour a small amount of the blue ink onto a white tablecloth. Observers will become alarmed and believe the tablecloth is ruined. However, the trick is that the ink will gradually disappear as it dries.

The second item #G012, is a “Crazy Golf Ball” that wobbles sideways after being hit. As the ball resembles a conventional golf ball, it may be used as a prank to fool an avid golfer who unsuspectingly hits the ball during a game. The golfer is surprised to see the ball move in irregular directions that are inconsistent with the way the ball would ordinarily travel. The ball is imported packaged on a blister card.

The “Crawling Maggots,” item #G013, are plastic, glow-in-the-dark, creatures that resemble the figure of a maggot. Each maggot measures approximately 1 ¼” in length. Seven creatures are packaged in one blister card. The card instructs the user to expose the maggots to a bright light before throwing them against a window or mirror where they will adhere and “crawl” down.

Item #G023 is for a blister packed bar of “Black Face Soap.” The soap resembles an ordinary 2 ¼” bar of white hand soap. When the soap is used with water in washing one’s hands, the hands will turn black instead of being cleaned due to the chemical make-up of the soap. The soap is intended strictly for practical joke purposes.

The last item #G049, is for a “Fart Whistle” that consists of a plastic mouthpiece with a rubber attachment. When the user blows through the mouthpiece, it produces a sound that mimics the passing of gas. Although, marketed as a practical joke, the article does not place an individual at a humorous disadvantage and therefore does not qualify for classification as such. The product is simply designed to amuse and more closely meets the definition of a toy in Chapter 95.

The applicable subheading for the “Magic Disappearing Ink”- #G001, “Crazy Golf Ball”- #G012 and “Black Face Soap”- #G023, will be 9505.90.2000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for magic tricks and practical joke articles; parts and accessories thereof. The rate of duty will be free.

The applicable subheading for the “Fart Whistle”- #G049 will be 9503.90.0045, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other toys: other: other toys and models. The rate of duty will be free.

The applicable subheading for the “Crawling Maggots,” item #G013, will be 9503.49.0025, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for toys representing animals or non-human creatures: other: toys. The rate of duty will be free.

Please note that, the “Magic Disappearing Ink” may be subject to the regulations of the Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Pesticides and Toxic Substances. You may contact them at 401 M Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20460, telephone number (202) 554-1404, or EPA Region II, at (732) 321-6669.

In addition, requirements may be imposed on the “Black Face Soap” by the Food and Drug Administration. You may contact the FDA at (301) 443-6553 or by mail:

U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Division of Import Operations and Policy HFC 170 5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, Maryland 20857

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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