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NY F88404

July 19, 2000

MAR-2-61: RR:NC:TA:359 F88404


Mr. W. J. Gonzalez
General Manager
Trans-Union Customs Service, Inc.
11941 S. Prairie Ave.
Hawthorne, CA 90250


Dear Mr. Gonzalez:

This is in response to your letter dated May 31, 2000, submitted on behalf of the importer of record, The Territory Ahead, Inc., Santa Barbara, California, which requested a ruling to determine whether a proposed country of origin marking label is acceptable for imported women’s knitted wearing apparel. A marked sample was not submitted with your letter for review.

You submitted an illustration of the proposed marking label. You stated in a telephone conversation with the National Import Specialist (NIS) that the marking label was intended to be used on items of women’s knitted wearing apparel. You proposed to have the country of origin marking label indicate both the country of origin of the garment as well as the country of origin of the fabric. The illustration submitted features the Registered Number, the fiber content of the garment and the words “MADE IN CHINA”, and “FABRIC FROM ITALY”. On the reverse side it reads “MACHINE WASH WARM, TUMBLE DRY LOW, WASH SEPARATELY”. The lettering on both sides are of the same size. When you produce the actual label, this lettering must be permanent, conspicuous and legible.

Since the illustration shows two different countries (Made in China, Fabric from Italy), you asked if this is acceptable.

The marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently as the nature of the article (or its container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article. Congressional intent in enacting 19 U.S.C. 1304 was “that the ultimate purchaser should be able to know by an inspection of the marking on the imported goods the country of which the goods is the product. The evident purpose 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 CCPA 297, 302, C.A.D. 104 (1940).

Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. As provided in section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), the country of origin marking is considered conspicuous if the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. is able to find the marking easily and read it without strain.

Customs ruled in T.D. 54640(6) (July 15, 1958), that shirts, blouses, coats, sweaters and similar wearing must be legible and conspicuously marked with the name of the country of origin by means of a fabric label or label made from natural or synthetic film sewn or otherwise permanently affixed on the inside center of the neck midway between the shoulder seams or in that immediate area or otherwise permanently marked in that area in some other manner.

The proposed marking label of imported women’s wearing apparel should be altered to read “MADE IN CHINA”, and “FABRIC KNITTED IN ITALY”. Such a label, if it is conspicuously, legibly and permanently marked in satisfaction of the marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134 is an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported merchandise.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 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 Mike Crowley at 212-637-7077.


Robert B. Swierupski

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