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NY M82090

April 28, 2006

MAR-2 RR:NC:N1:113 M82090


Ms. Jessica T. DePinto
Hodes Keating & Pilon
39 South LaSalle Street, Suite 1020
Chicago, IL 60603


Dear Ms. DePinto:

This is in response to your letter dated March 28, 2006, on behalf of Lembak Global Sourcing, requesting a ruling on whether the proposed marking "Lid/Hand Crank Assembly Made in China" is an acceptable country of origin marking for popcorn popper lids. A sample was submitted with your letter for review.

The sample you provided is the “Genuine Whirley Pop” popcorn popper. The actual imported item is the lid, made of metal with a wooden handle. The handle contains a metal crank to allow the consumer to stir the popcorn kernels in the pan without having to lift or shake the pan while the popcorn is cooking. The sample is marked with a US address; however, according to your letter, this address will be replaced on the actual imported lid with the words “Wabash Valley Farms,” a registered trademark.

You propose to import the lids in bulk, unmarked. The shipping containers will bear the marking “Made on China” or similar marking. After importation, the distributor will repackage the lids with the pot and popcorn into retail box gift sets. The gift set will remain packaged until purchase by the retail customer. At this time the retail box will contain the words “Country of Origin Marking, “Lid/Hand Crank Assembly Made in China.” This marking will be on the panel that also contains the warranty and instructions for use.

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.

Section 134.26 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.26), which applies to articles that are repacked or manipulated after importation, provides the following:

(a) Certification requirements. If an article subject to these requirements is intended to be repacked in retail containers (e.g., blister packs) after its release from Customs custody, or if the district director having custody of the article, has reason to believe such article will be repacked after its release, the importer shall certify to the district director that: (1) if the importer does the repacking, he shall not obscure or conceal the country of origin marked to indicate the country of origin of the article, or else the new container shall be marked to indicate the country of origin of the article in accordance with the requirements of this part; or (2) if the article is intended to be sold or transferred to a subsequent purchaser or repacker, the importer shall notify such purchaser or transferee, in writing, at the time of sale or transfer, that any repacking of the article must conform to these requirements.

Since the lids will be repackaged after importation into the U.S., they are subject to the requirements of section 134.34, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.34), which provides that an exception from marking may be authorized in the discretion of the port director under 19 CFR 134.32(d) for imported articles which are to be repacked after release from Customs custody under the following conditions: (1) The containers in which the articles are repacked will indicate the origin of the article to an ultimate purchaser in the U.S.; (2) The importer arranges for supervision of the marking of the containers. Therefore, approval for marking the retail package instead of the individual lids must be obtained from the port director at the port of entry.

Therefore, the imported parts may be excepted from individual marking pursuant to 19 CFR 134.32(d), provided that Customs officials at the port of entry are satisfied that the articles will reach the ultimate purchaser in properly marked containers and the certification requirements of 19 CFR 134.26 are executed. The phrase "Lid/Hand Crank Assembly Made in China" is acceptable.

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 James Smyth at 646-733-3018.


Robert B. Swierupski

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