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NY J87878

August 21, 2003

CLA-2-48:RR:NC:SP:234 J87878


TARIFF NO.: 4823.70.0000

Mr. Bradford D. Price
Simply Biodegradable
3206 W. Lakeshore Court, Suite 118
Moses Lake, WA 98837

RE: The tariff classification of disposable dinnerware made of molded or pressed pulp, from China.

Dear Mr. Price:

In your letter dated July 25, 2003, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Samples of disposable dishes (plates) and a one-piece, hinged, clamshell-style “meal box” were submitted for our examination. They appear to be of the kind made by molding or pressing cellulosic pulp into the appropriate shape. An information sheet from the supplier indicates that they are made from sugarcane pulp (40-50%), reed pulp (40-50%), wood pulp (10%), water repellence additive (2%) and oil repellence additive (1.1%).

You believe that this merchandise is classifiable in subheading 4602.90.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other (non-enumerated) articles of plaiting materials. However, as explained in Note 1 of Chapter 46, HTS, and in the Harmonized General Explanatory Notes for that chapter, “plaiting materials” must be in a state or form (e.g., strips) suitable for plaiting, interlacing or similar processes. While reeds, sugarcane and wood are suitable sources of plaiting materials, in this instance they have been mechanically ground and/or chemically digested into pulp prior to being made into dinnerware. Since pulp is not in a state or form suitable for braiding, weaving, interlacing, etc., products made of it cannot be considered plaited articles of Chapter 46, HTS. Articles of pulp are provided for in Chapter 48, HTS, and are generally classifiable therein.

The applicable subheading for the above-described disposable dinnerware will be 4823.70.0000, HTS, which provides for molded or pressed articles of paper pulp. The rate of duty will be free.

This merchandise may be subject to regulations administered by the Division of Import Operations & Policy, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). You may contact that agency at 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857, telephone (301) 443-6553.

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 Carl Abramowitz at 646-733-3037.


Robert B. Swierupski

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