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NY H82879

July 26, 2001

MAR-2 RR:NC:TA:360 H82879


William Ortiz
S.J. Stile Associates Ltd.
181 South Franklin Ave.
Valley stream, NY 11581

RE: The country of origin marking of women's woven upper body garments

Dear Mr. Ortiz:

This is in response to your letter dated June 25, 2001 on behalf of Tahari Ltd., requesting a ruling on whether the proposed country of origin marking using a plastic material is an acceptable marking for imported women's woven upper body garments. The sample submitted with your request will be returned to you under separate cover.

The submitted sample, style B30004A, is women's woven pullover upper body garment. The garment contains a small label, less than 5 mm in width, made from plastic film bearing the country of origin in the nape of the neck. In addition, there is a fabric label, approximately 1 ½" by 1", sewn into the side seam above the hem. This label contains consumer information such as size, fiber content and care instructions, as well as, the country of origin.

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.

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.

With regard to the permanency of a marking, section 134.41(a), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(a)), provides that as a general rule marking requirements are best met by marking worked into the article at the time of manufacture. For example, it is suggested that the country of origin on metal articles be die sunk, molded in, or etched. However, section 134.44, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.44), generally provides that any marking that is sufficiently permanent so that it will remain on the article until it reaches the ultimate purchaser unless deliberately removed is acceptable.

In T.D. 54640(6), Customs determined that, to be conspicuous, the country of origin marking of wearing apparel such as shirts, blouses and sweaters must be accomplished 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 in order to be conspicuous within the meaning of 19 U.S.C. §1304.

In this case, we find that the proposed sewn-in country of origin label, which is made of a plastic film, is conspicuous, permanent and legible. The sewn-in label is easy to find and read upon a casual examination of the garment as it appears next to the brand name label in the nape of the neck. Also, considering that there is a fabric sewn-in label containing other consumer information such as size, fiber content and care instructions, in our opinion an ultimate purchaser would also examine the fabric sewn-in label marked with the country of origin prior to making a purchasing decision. The plastic film label, in addition to the label containing all the pertinent information for the consumer, is acceptable marking.

The proposed marking of imported women's woven upper body garment, style B30004A, as described above, is conspicuously, legibly and permanently marked in satisfaction of the marking requirements of 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134 and is an acceptable country of origin marking for the imported garment.

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 Patricia Schiazzano at 212-637-7080.


Robert B. Swierupski

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