HQ 732418

Feb. 12, 1990

MAR 2-05 CO:R:C:V 732418 pmh

Ms. Ann M. Williams
A.N. Deringer, Inc.
30 West Service Road
Champlain, NY 12919-9703

RE: Country of origin marking requirements for work gloves

Dear Ms. Williams:

This is in response to your letter of May 18, 1989, on behalf of your client, Edmont Canada, of Quebec Canada, requesting a ruling on the country of origin marking requirements for work gloves.


According to a copy of a May 15, 1989 letter, your client imports into Canada, cotton glove liners from China. In Canada the glove liners are dipped in poly vinyl chloride (P.V.C.) which coats the outside of the gloves making them liquid proof. The finished liquid proof gloves are imported into the U.S. in this condition. Your client estimated that the cost of the cotton gloves imported into Canada from China is $4.86/dozen; the cost of the liquid proof gloves exported to the U.S. is $19.02/dozen.


Whether the gloves are substantially transformed by the processing they undergo in Canada


Section 304 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly, and permanently as the nature of the article (or 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. Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Section 134.1(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.1(b)), defines the country of origin as "the country of manufacture, production, or growth of any article of foreign origin entering the U.S. Further work or material added to an article in another country must effect a substantial transformation in order to render such other country the 'country of origin' within the meaning of this part."

In defining what constitutes a substantial transformation, Courts have held that the further work or material added to an article must result in the article taking on a new name, character or use. See United States v. Gibson-Thomsen Co., Inc., 27 C.C.P.A. 267, C.A.D. 98 (1940). In determining whether there has been a sufficient change in character and use to affect a substantial transformation, Customs has looked to whether the processing done increases the value of the article so that it is no longer the "essence" of the final product. See Uniroyal, Inc. v. United States, 3 CIT 220, 542 F. Supp. 1026 (1982), aff'd, 702 F.2d 1022 (Fed. Cir 1983).

In HQ Ruling 729844, dated October 24, 1986, Customs held that coating cotton foam glove liners in a synthetic rubber or plastic compound constituted a substantial transformation. Likewise, in this case the processing the glove liners undergo in Canada changes the fundamental character of the gloves. The gloves attain a special quality, i.e., they become liquid proof. We find that this quality increases the value of the gloves, making them suitable for many additional uses. Indeed, we find that the PVC coating is the essence of the finished article. Consequently, it is our opinion that the cotton glove liners are substantially transformed by the PVC coating that is applied to them in Canada.


Cotton glove liners from China are substantially transformed in Canada where a PVC coating is applied to them to make them liquid proof. Therefore, Canada is the country of origin and the finished articles must be marked accordingly, in the manner set forth in 19 U.S.C. 1304 and 19 CFR Part 134.


Marvin M. Amernick
Chief, Value, Special Programs
and Admissibility Branch