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NY J83751

May 1, 2003

CLA-2-95:RR:NC:N2:224 J83751


TARIFF NO.: 9506.99.1500

Marc D. Torrence
V. Alexander & Co., Inc.
P.O. Box 291929
Nashville TN 37229-1929

RE: Country of origin of a teeball bat imported from Canada.

Dear Mr. Torrence:

This is our ruling in response to your letter of April 11, 2003, requesting a binding ruling as to the country of origin for a 3DXTBC teeball bat imported from Canada.

You state that the entire manufacturing process, starting with the formulation of a hardened foam “core” and ending with the retail packaging, will be divided between the United States and Canada. You outline the following manufacturing process:

Polyurethane foam is dispensed into a mold containing a polystyrene tube and a rubber end cap. The foam cures for eight minutes and then the assembly, now called a “core,” is removed. This process takes place in your client’s U.S. plant and utilizes U.S. components. The core is shipped to a manufacturer in Canada where a fiberglass, graphite, and epoxy polymer composite is applied to the cord. A rubber grip and plastic knob are added to the handle end of the processed core and the result is a bat. Graphics are applied and the entire bat is clear coated. All the materials used in the Canadian operation are of Canadian origin. The bat is then shipped to the U.S. where it is shrink wrapped and labeled for retail sale.

The issue here is whether the manufacturing process to which the United States exported core will be subjected to in Canada to produce a teeball bat satisfies the criteria for substantial transformation of the bat into a product of Canada. A secondary issue is whether the shrink wrapping and labeling of the fabricated bat in the United States is a second substantial transformation.

The country of origin of an article for United States tariff purposes is the country in which the last substantial transformation took place. The fundamental test for determining a substantial transformation is whether the processing, which must be a manufacturing process, results in a change in name, character or use different from that possessed by the article that is subjected to the processing. Substantial transformation cannot result from a manufacturing or combining process of a minor nature that leaves the identity of the article intact.

In this case, the material is the bat core exported from the United States. The procedure of processing the core material into an identifiable teeball bat results in an article with a new name, character, and use. The processing of the core in Canada into a bat for export to the United States constitutes a substantial transformation of the bat. The country of origin of the teeball bat is Canada. The additional work in the United States, including shrink wrapping and labeling the bat, is merely a finishing operation performed on a fabricated article and does not result in a second substantial transformation.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 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 Tom McKenna at 646-733-3025.


Robert B. Swierupski

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