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HQ 964352

September 11, 2000

CLA-2 RR:CR:GC 964352ptl


TARIFF NO.: 7323.93.0080; 7323.99.9060

Mr. Ed Baker
A. N. Deringer, Inc.
30 West Service Road
Champlain, NY 12919-9703

RE: Floor Standing Steel Ashtray Cylinders and Waste Receptacles; NY 881909 modified; HQ 962658.

Dear Mr. Baker:

In response to your letter of January 10, 1993, on behalf of Cendrex Inc., the Area Director of the New York Seaport issued you NY 881909, on January 25, 1993, which addressed the tariff classification of several articles under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). That ruling classified floor standing steel ashtray cylinders and waste receptacles in subheading 9403.20.0030, HTSUS, which provides for other furniture and parts thereof, other metal furniture, other, other. We have reviewed this ruling and determined that that classification is incorrect. Pursuant to the analysis set forth below the correct classification for floor standing steel ashtray cylinders and waste receptacles is either subheading 7323.93.0080, HTSUS, or 7323.99.9060, HTSUS, depending on the exterior finish of the article. This ruling does not change the classification of the other articles in NY 881909.

Pursuant to section 625(c), Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1625(c)), notice of the proposed modification of NY 881909 was published on August 9, 2000, in the Customs Bulletin, Volume 34, Number 32. No comments were received.


The merchandise covered by this ruling consists of various models of cylindrical ashtrays and various models of combination ashtray/waste receptacles all of which are designed to stand on the floor to collect trash and other waste materials. The articles vary in diameter from 8 to 18 inches and in height from 18 to over 24 inches. All the articles are primarily of steel construction with some aluminum components. The article's surface is either chromed, polished steel or painted.


What is the classification of floor standing steel ashtray cylinders and waste receptacles?


Merchandise is classifiable under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). The systematic detail of the HTSUS is such that virtually all goods are classified by application of GRI 1, that is, according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative Section or Chapter Notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRIs may then be applied in order.

In understanding the language of the HTSUS, the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes may be utilized. The Explanatory Notes (ENs), although not dispositive or legally binding, provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS, and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of these headings. See T.D. 89-80, 54 Fed. Reg. 35127, 35128 (August 23, 1989).

The HTSUS headings under consideration are as follows:

7323 Table, kitchen or other household articles and parts thereof, of iron or steel; iron or steel wool; pot scourers and scouring or polishing pads, gloves and the like, of iron or steel:


7323.93.00 Of stainless steel.

7323.93.0080 Other.

7323.99 Other:

Not coated or plated with precious metal:


7323.99.90 Other.

7323.99.9060 Other.

7326 Other articles of iron or steel:

7326.90 Other:


7326.90.85 Other.

7326.90.8585 Other.

9403 Other furniture and parts thereof:

9403.20.00 Other metal furniture.


9403.20.0030 Other..

As noted above, classification of goods is governed by the GRI headings and relevant section and chapter notes. Note 1(k) to Section XV, HTSUS, states that "This section does not cover: (k) Articles of Chapter 94 (for example, furniture, mattress supports, lamps and lighting fittings, illuminated signs, prefabricated buildings)". Therefore, because Chapter 73 is contained within Section XV, we must first determine whether the waste receptacles are articles of Chapter 94.

The General Chapter Notes to Chapter 94 state:

"For the purposes of this Chapter, the term “furniture” means:

(A) Any “movable” articles (not included under other more specific headings of the Nomenclature), which have the essential characteristic that they are constructed for placing on the floor or ground, and which are used, mainly with a utilitarian purpose, to equip private dwellings, hotels, theatres, cinemas, offices, churches, schools, cafés, restaurants, laboratories, hospitals, dentists’ surgeries, etc., or ships, aircraft, railway coaches, motor vehicles, caravan-trailers or similar means of transport. (It should be noted that, for the purposes of this Chapter, articles are considered to be “movable” furniture even if they are designed for bolting, etc., to the floor, e.g., chairs for use on ships). Similar articles (seats, chairs, etc.) for use in gardens, squares, promenades, etc., are also included in this category." (Emphasis in original.)

NY 881909 classified the articles in subheading 9403.20.0030, HTSUS, as other metal furniture. The ENs to heading 9403 state:

This heading covers furniture and parts thereof, not covered by the previous headings. It includes furniture for general use (e.g., cupboards, show-cases, tables, telephone stands, writing-desks, escritoires, book-cases, and other shelved furniture, etc.), and also furniture for special uses.

The heading includes furnitures for:

(1) Private dwellings, hotels, etc., such as: cabinets, linen chests, bread chests, log chests; chests of drawers, tallboys; pedestals, plant stands; dressing-tables; pedestal tables; wardrobes, linen presses; hall stands, umbrella stands; side-boards, dressers, cupboards; food-safes; bedside tables; beds (including wardrobe beds, camp-beds, folding beds, cots, etc.); needlework tables; foot-stools, fire screens; draught-screens; pedestal ashtrays; music cabinets, music stands or desks; play-pens; serving trolleys (whether or not fitted with a hot plate).

(2) Offices, such as: clothes lockers, filing cabinets, filing trolleys, card index files, etc.

However, the ENs further state:

The heading does not include:

(d) Waste-paper baskets (of plastics, heading 39.26; of basket or wickerwork, heading 46.02; of base metal, headings 73.26, 74.19, etc.).

All the various objects cited as examples of furniture covered by heading 9403 which are used to contain or store other articles have as a characteristic that they are designed to preserve or protect the contained article for future use (cabinets, linen chests, tallboys, clothes lockers, filing cabinets, etc.). Pedestal ashtrays, mentioned in the EN, are usually "hour-glass" shaped, crafted with refined detail and flowing decorative lines to accessorize rooms of offices and fall into a class entirely unlike the large, stark cylinder ashtrays being classified.

According to the language of the HTSUS, furniture articles are intended "to equip" something. The Random House Dictionary of the English Language, (1973) defines the word "equip" as meaning: "To furnish or provide with whatever is needed for service or for any undertaking." Waste receptacles cannot be considered necessary for the functioning of an office, industry or building. We also note that the definition of furniture in Chapter 94 is not all-encompassing. By including the words "not included under other more specific headings" in the definition of furniture, the drafters of the ENs intended that Chapter 94 would not cover all "movable" articles constructed for placing on the floor. A more specific heading which better describes the article is preferable to the more general heading of furniture. One such more specific heading suggested by the ENs is 7326, HTSUS, which provides for waste-paper baskets.

Despite all the exemplars of articles considered to be furniture in the ENs, we do not find any whose use or function is comparable to the waste receptacles or cylinder ashtrays. The modern trend toward smoke-free buildings is forcing most ashtrays outside buildings where they would not be considered furniture. Those which remain inside function as waste receptacles since ash-producing products have been banned. Waste paper baskets, which are not designed to equip a building, office or room, but serve as temporary repositories of something no longer wanted or needed are specifically excluded from heading 9403, HTSUS

The waste receptacles fall within the exclusionary language of EN 94.03 (d) on page 1703. That paragraph states: "The heading [covering furniture] does not include: (d) Waste-paper baskets of base metal, headings 73.26, 74.19, etc.)." While the Note specifically refers to heading 7326, HTSUS, through the use of "etc." it indicates that similar articles of other headings are likewise excluded from heading 9403.

We note that the ENs to heading 73.23, HTSUS, which covers table, kitchen or other household articles and parts thereof, states that it comprises a wide range of iron or steel articles used for table, kitchen or other household purposes and that it includes the same goods for use in hotels, restaurants, boarding-houses, hospitals, canteens, barracks, etc. Among goods specifically included in this heading are dustbins and ash-trays. According to the Random House Dictionary of the English Language, (1973), the term "dustbin" is chiefly a British term for an ash can or garbage can. In HQ 950644, issued December 27, 1991, Customs stated, "Recognizing that the English used in the EN's is British English, we believe the term dustbin therein is synonymous with the American terms trash can, refuse can, garbage can, and cart, as herein applicable." Thus, we safely state that steel waste receptacles are included within the scope of heading 7323, HTSUS.

The goods being classified are intended to be used to collect trash, litter and waste in public areas of buildings. This use is nothing more than an extension of a housekeeping function. Indeed, the personnel who empty such articles are frequently referred to as the "Housekeeping Staff." Accordingly, in view of the inclusion of both dustbins and ash-trays in heading 7323, HTSUS, we believe the subject waste receptacles and cylinder ashtrays are properly classified in this heading. Heading 7323, HTSUS, being descriptive of the articles and more specific is preferable than heading 7326, HTSUS. See HQ 962658, dated July 18, 2000, for a similar ruling.


Floor standing steel ashtray cylinders and waste receptacles are classified in either subheading 7323.93.0080, HTSUS, or subheading 7323.99.9060, HTSUS, depending on the exterior surface of the article.

NY 881909, dated January 25, 1993, is modified in accordance with this ruling. In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625(c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the Customs Bulletin.


John Durant, Director

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