CLA-2 CO:R:C:F 089456 JGH
Mr. Clyde Reed
Reed Chemical Corporation
233 West Parkway
Pompton Plains, N.J. 07444
RE: Classification of Ground Wood Pulp
Dear Mr. Reed:
This is in reference to your letter of March 29, 1991,
concerning the classificaton of ground wood pulp under the
Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS).
The wood pulp is said to be imported from Germany. It is
described as being produced by the mechanically grinding or
milling of wood pulp to various particle sizes, designated by
different grades. The different grades are said to be obtained
by varying the length of time the pulp is in the machine.
A Customs laboratory report of a sample, described it as a
white fibrous material, composed of ground-up, chemically
bleached sulfate pulp. It was also said to be of a dissolving
Whether the ground wood pulp is classifiable as cellulose in
subheading 3912, HTSUS, or chemical wood pulp, dissolving grades,
in subheading 4702.00.0040, HTSUS.
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LAW AND ANALYSIS:
Merchandise imported into the United States is classified
under the provisions of the HTSUS, and classification is governed
by the principles set forth in the General Rules of
Interpretation (GRIs). The Explanatory Notes provide an
interpretation of the provisions of the HTSUS on the
international level. GRI 1 requires that classification be
determined first in accordance with the headings of the HTSUS and
any relative section and chapter notes, and (unless otherwise
required) according to the remaining GRIs taken in order.
The explanatory notes to chapter 47 note that wood pulp may
be semi-bleached, or bleached by chemicals or may be unbleached.
A pulp, it is stated, should be regarded as semi-bleached or
bleached if, after manufacture, it has been subjected to any
treatment intended to increase its degree of whiteness. Pulp, it
is noted, may be in powder or flake form. The wood pulp of
subheading 4701 is said to be obtained by solely mechanical
processes; whereas the chemical wood pulp of subheading 4702
(dissolving grades) is obtained by a chemical process, such as
the "sulphate" process. This form of pulp, which can be in
powder or flake form, is said to be a source for regenerated
cellulose, celluose ethers and esters.
On the other hand, cellulose and its chemical derivatives,
in subheading 3912, HTSUS, is said to be obtained by a chemical
processing and is no longer considered a fibrous material.
The products in issue are a fibrous form and chemically
treated, and are therefore considered dissolving grades of
chemical wood pulp. They are classifiable in subheading
4702.00.0040, HTSUS and are duty free.
John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division