The following final revocations and modifications of U.S. Customs and Border Protection classification rulings are included in the June 24 and July 1, 2020, issues of Customs Bulletin and Decisions. These revocations and modifications will be effective with respect to goods entered or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption on or after Aug. 23 (instant coffee and storage boxes) or Aug. 29 (shoes and blades).

For more information on how to seek or utilize classification and other rulings, please contact Deb Stern at (305) 894-1007.

Instant Coffee Mixes

CBP is reclassifying three specific instant coffee mixes as preparations with a basis of coffee under HTSUS 2101.12.5400 (10 percent duty; HTSUS 2101.12.58 if the applicable quota has been reached) or 2101.12.9000 (8.5 percent duty) rather than as instant coffee under HTSUS 2101.11.2126 (duty-free) or HTSUS 2101.11.2941 (duty-free). Ruling HQ H308080 will revoke ruling NY N303841 to reflect this change.

CBP explains that it is well-established that instant coffee mixes that include milk and/or sugar, like the ones at issue, are classified as preparations because they include other ingredients besides coffee. CBP adds that classification within HTSUS 2101.12 depends on the sugar content of the product.

Slip-On Shoes

CBP is reclassifying a men’s casual slip-on shoe as footwear having a foxing or foxing-like band under HTSUS 6404.19.9030 (9 percent duty) rather than as footwear not having a foxing or foxing-like band under HTSUS 6404.19.3940 (37.5 percent duty). Ruling HQ H299500 will modify ruling NY N285624 to reflect this change.

The product at issue is a men’s closed-toe, closed-heel, below-the-ankle, casual slip-on shoe. The upper is made from 100 percent cotton textile material. Elastic gore is sewn on the lateral and medial sides of the vamp, and the medial side of the shoe has two metal ventholes covered with a mesh. The outer sole is made from 100 percent rubber or plastics. The shoe is not protective and does not have a foxing or foxing-like band.

CBP states that upon review of new information provided, along with an assessment of two samples, it finds that the outer sole that covers and overlaps the upper textile material of the shoe measures one-quarter inch vertically around the entire perimeter. Also, the foxing-like band of the shoe encircles the entire shoe, including the front toe area and the heel area, and has the appearance and characteristic of the foxing on traditional tennis shoes. Likewise, the foxing-like band does not stem from a separate component but instead is molded into and part of the outer-sole component.

Steel Doctor Blades

CBP is reclassifying steel doctor blades intended to be used as parts for printing presses under HTSUS 7209.90.0000, 7211.90.0000, 7219.90.0060, or 7220.90.0060 (all duty-free) rather than under HTSUS 7210.90.9000, 7212.50.0000, 7212.90.00, or 7220.90.00 (all duty-free). Ruling HQ H303128 will modify ruling NY N301037 to reflect this change.

The steel in these items is cold-rolled in Sweden and shipped to Italy, where the edges are ground. The final product has a ceramic coating and is shipped from Italy to the U.S. Although stated to be custom-made, the blades are flat-rolled steel in 200 meter coils that are imported without markings indicating at what length the doctor blades need to be cut for printing press use.

Storage Boxes

CBP is reclassifying textile-covered high-density fiberboard boxes as wood boxes lined with textile fabrics under HTSUS 4420.90.6500 (duty-free) rather than as other made-up articles under HTSUS 6307.90.9889 (7 percent duty). Ruling HQ H305320 will revoke ruling NY N302855 to reflect this change.

The products at issue are two styles of storage boxes. The first is an open-faced drawer organizer with multiple divider panels inside. The second is a closed box sweater organizer with a see-through drop front panel that can be opened to provide access to the stored items. Both boxes come in a variety of sizes and can be used to store clothes, accessories, hosiery, and lingerie.

CBP explains that these boxes are composite goods and that pursuant to GRI 3(b) their essential character is provided by the high-density fiberboard, which “is what makes the boxes function as a box.” The textile covering, meanwhile, “is an aesthetic feature that does not change the essential character of the box or its use as a box.”

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