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NY I86510

September 24, 2002

CLA-2-23:RR:NC:2:231 I86510


TARIFF NO.: 2301.20.00.90

Ms. Melissa Dwyer
Trade New Zealand
New Zealand Trade Development Board
780 Third Avenue, Suite 1904
New York, NY 10017-2024

RE: The tariff classification of fishing bait from New Zealand.

Dear Ms. Dwyer:

In your letter, dated August 23, 2002, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise, “Topcatch” brand “Instant Bait,” is fishing bait. The product consists of a fluid sachet and a powder sachet, packed together in a heat-sealed plastic pouch. The fluid sachet is comprised of 99 percent filtered, town supply water and 1 percent trace mineral salts and trace water soluble, food grade, vegetable dye. The powder sachet consists of 87-93 percent food grade wheat protein, 6-12 percent fish, shellfish or crustacean powders, 0.6 percent food grade whitener minerals, and less than 0.1 percent food grade vegetable dyes. When used by the consumer, the pouch is cut open and the two sachets removed. The fluid sachet is then opened and emptied into the plastic pouch and, to that, is added the fine brown powder in the second sachet. The pouch is clip-sealed and shaken vigorously, until a dough substance is formed. This dough is then removed from the pouch and kneaded to useable consistency.

Several headings have been considered for the classification of this product. Heading 9507, HTSUS, provides for fishing rods, fish hooks and other line fishing tackleparts and accessories thereof. The Explanatory Notes state that fishing bait is within the scope of this heading. However, the type of bait included is artificial bait.

Heading 0511, HTSUS, provides for animal products, not elsewhere specified or included. This heading covers only crude substances of animal origin. The instant product, which is a combination worked vegetable, mineral and animal substances, is beyond the scope of the provision.

Heading 2309, HTSUS, provides for preparations of a kind used in animal feeding. “Instant Bait” is not a preparation for feeding animals.

In fact, there is no single heading that describes this product. Accordingly, following the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs), goods which cannot be classified under GRI 1 are classifiable under the remaining GRIs. The “Instant Bait,” for classification purposes, is a set, consisting of a sachet of water, along with a sachet of flour, put up for retail sale in a plastic pouch. Under GRI 3(b), “mixtures, composite goods consisting of different materials or made up of different components, and goods put up in sets for retail sale, which cannot be classified with reference to 3(a), shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character, insofar as this criterion is applicable.” In the “Instant Bait,” the flour sachet, rather than the fluid sachet, imparts the essential character to the set. The classification of the flour sachet, which is a mixture classifiable under GRI 2(b) and 3(b), is under subheading 2301.20.0090, HTSUS, as the fish, shellfish or crustacean powders in the product, which attract the fish to the hook, impart the essential character to flour mixture.

Accordingly, the applicable subheading for this “Topcatch" brand " Instant Bait” will be 2301.20.0090, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for Flours, meals and pellets of meat, meat offal, of fish or of crustaceans, molluscs or other aquatic invertebrates, unfit for human consumption; greaves (cracklings):Flours, meals and pellets. of fish or of crustaceans, molluscs or other aquatic invertebratesOther. The general rate of duty will be Free.

This product may be subject to regulations or requirements administered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. You may contact the FDA at:

Food and Drug Administration
Division of Import Operations and Policy
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, MD 20857

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 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 Thomas Brady at (646) 733-3030.


Robert B. Swierupski

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