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NY H88172

February 27, 2002

MAR-2 RR:NC:2:230 H88172


Mr. Martin W. Bloch
Dell Will Customs Brokers
26395 Northline Commerce Dr., Suite 600
Taylor, MI 48180


Dear Mr. Bloch:

This is in response to your letter dated January 30, 2002 requesting a ruling on whether the proposed marking "MADE IN CANADA" is an acceptable country of origin marking for imported wooden roof trusses. The request was made on behalf of the importer, the Fennell Corporation. A marked sample was not submitted; however, a sample of the proposed marking stamped on a sheet of paper was submitted with your letter for review.

The marking “MADE IN CANADA” is 2-5/8” long and consists of capital letters which measure approximately 5/8” high. You state that this country of origin marking is presently being stamped in ink on each individual roof truss. You inquire whether this marking is required to be put on any specific location on the truss. You are also concerned about ink stamping lumber because it can “bleed” and become illegible. Additionally, you inquire whether, as an alternative method of marking, one large painted stamp on an entire load of trusses would be 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. Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134) implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304.

The country of origin marking requirements for a "good of a NAFTA country" are also determined in accordance with Annex 311 of the North American Free Trade Agreement ("NAFTA"), as implemented by section 207 of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act (Pub. L. 103-182, 107 Stat 2057) (December 8, 1993) and the appropriate Customs Regulations. The Marking Rules used for determining whether a good is a good of a NAFTA country are contained in Part 102, Customs Regulations. The marking requirements of these goods are set forth in Part 134, Customs Regulations.

Section 134.45(a)(2) of the regulations, provides that "a good of a NAFTA country may be marked with the name of the country of origin in English, French or Spanish. Section 134.1(g) of the regulations, defines a "good of a NAFTA country" as an article for which the country of origin is Canada, Mexico or the United States as determined under the NAFTA Marking Rules.

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.

We find that the large size of roof trusses necessitates the country of origin marking to be of a proportionate size and placed at an appropriate location(s) so as to be conspicuous and legible to the ultimate purchaser in the United States. In addition, the use of indelible ink will make the stamp permanent and prevent the ink from “bleeding.” It is noted that lumber is generally marked with mill and grade marks.

The suggested alternative method of marking an entire load of roof trusses with one large painted country of origin would not be an acceptable method of marking, unless a particular shipment is excepted from the country of origin marking requirements under one of the conditions specified by section 134.32, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.32).

The holding set forth above applies only to the specific factual situation and merchandise description as identified in the ruling request. This position is clearly set forth in 19 CFR 181.100(a)(2). This section states that a ruling letter is issued on the assumption that all of the information furnished in the ruling letter, either directly, by reference, or by implication, is accurate and complete in every material respect.

This ruling is being issued under the assumption that the subject goods, in their condition as imported into the United States, conform to the facts and the description as set forth both in the ruling request and in this ruling. In the event that the facts or merchandise are modified in any way, you should bring this to the attention of Customs and you should resubmit for a new ruling in accordance with 19 CFR 181.93. You should also be aware that the material facts described in the foregoing ruling may be subject to periodic verification by the Customs Service.

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

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 Paul Garretto at 646-733-3035.


Robert B. Swierupski

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