CLA-2 CO:R:C:F 953753 ALS

District Director of Customs
555 Battery Street
San Francisco, CA 94111

RE: Request for Further Review of Protest 2809-93-100020, dated January 7, 1993, Concerning Pet Feeding Equipment

Dear Mr. Andrews: This ruling is on a protest that was filed against your decision of November 6, 1992, in the liquidation of an entry covering the referenced products.


The merchandise under consideration consists of floor standing dry food feeders, floor standing water founts, and cage mounted water bottles, including caps therefor, which are used to automatically dispense food and water to domesticated pets. The articles are made of plastic and are designed for use in and about the house. The products were classified in subheading 3926.90.9090, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA)(now 3926.90.9590, HTSUSA).


Are the subject articles classifiable as household articles of plastic or as other articles of plastic?


Classification of merchandise under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is governed by - 2 -

the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) taken in order. GRI 1 provides that the classification is determined first in accordance with the terms of the heading and any relative section and chapter notes. If GRI 1 fails to classify the goods and if the heading and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI's are applied taken in order.

Two of the products under consideration are pet water founts and dry food feeders. They are designed to be set on a floor and provide food or drink for small dogs, puppies, cats and kittens for 3-4 days which we would presume would be necessary when the animals owner is away from the house. The products are noted to be of durable heavy duty construction with a stable wide base design and they may be used for indoor or outdoor use.

The remaining products under consideration are plastic water bottles for birds or small animals which apparently fit on their cages and provide a ready water source. The bottles when in use are equipped with dispenser caps. The caps, based on the pictures in the protestant's catalog, appear to actually be an assembly consisting of a plastic cover with a hole in the center and a steel tube with an internal ball and rubber seal which passes through the cover. This permits the assembly to function as a manually operated flow control valve.

The protestant believes that the subject products are generally classifiable as household articles and classifiable in subheading 3924.10, HTSUSA, because they are used in and around the house. The protestant specifically claims that the bottles are classifiable in subheading 3923.30.0090, HTSUSA, under the provision therein for bottles.

In considering the protestant's claims we noted that subheading 3923.30.00, HTSUSA, covers articles for the conveyance or packing or goods. While bottles are specifically noted thereunder they are grouped with carboys, flasks and similar articles which are used to convey or pack goods. Since the subject bottles are not used for that purpose we do not believe they are classifiable in such subheading.

In considering the protestant's claim that the other pet items are household items because they are used in or about a house, we consulted the Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized System which represent the view of the international classification experts. We noted that the exemplars in EN 39.24 generally provide for articles which are used by persons in the - 3 -

decoration or maintenance of the house, in servicing humans, etc. The articles under consideration are beyond the scope of the aforementioned exemplars and, thus, we do not believe that such articles are properly considered household articles although they are used in the house. We believe that these items differ from items such as the cat litter scoop designed to clean cat litter which was covered by Headquarters Ruling Letter 088707, dated July 16, 1991. We note that all articles used in a house are not considered household articles, e.g., radio and television sets.

In regard to the caps used on the water bottles we note that they are more than simple caps which prevent liquids from escaping from the bottles. The caps consist of a plastic cover with a hole in the center and a steel tube with internal ball and rubber seal which passes through the cover. These cap assemblies function as manually operated flow control valves, dispensing liquid when manipulated by the animal. The caps would, if not imported with the bottles, be classifiable in the provision for valves.


Pet water bottles and dry food feeding equipment made of plastics are classifiable in subheading 3926.90.9590, HTSUSA, under the provision for other articles of plastics, other, other, other, other. Articles so classified are subject to a general rate of duty of 5.3 percent ad valorem.

Plastic caps with a hole in the center and a steel tube with internal ball and rubber seal which passes through the cover and which are designed to fit onto a pet water bottle are classifiable in subheading 8481.80.3090, HTSUSA, when separately imported. In such case they would be dutiable at a general rate of 8 percent ad valorem.

Since the classification indicated above is the same provision as the classification under which the entry was liquidated, you are instructed to deny the protest in full.

A copy of this ruling should be attached to the Customs Form 19 and provided to the protestant as part of the notice of action on the protest.

In accordance with Section 3A(11)(b) of Customs Directive 099 3550-065, dated August 4, 1993, Subject: Revised Protest Directive, this decision should be provided by your office to the - 4 -

protestant no later than 60 days from the date of this letter. Any reliquidation of the entry in accordance with the decision must be accomplished prior to mailing of the decision. Sixty days from the date of the decision the Office of Regulations and Rulings will take steps to make the decision available to Customs personnel via the Customs Rulings Module in ACS and public via the Diskette Subscription Service, Lexis, Freedom of Information Act and other public access channels.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division