Ms. Geri Davidson
The Container Store
500 Freeport Parkway
Coppell, TX 75019

RE: The tariff classification of a plastic compost bucket with a carbon filter and replacement carbon filters from Poland

Dear Ms. Davidson:

In your letter dated September 24, 2008, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The two submitted samples are identified as follows:

Compost bucket/carbon filter – VPN# 0790.61E. This item consists of a plastic bucket made of polypropylene (PP) plastic material. It measures 7-1/2 inches long by 5-1/2 inches wide by 8 inches high and has a 4 quart capacity. It has a handle, the two ends of which are attached to the two opposing shorter sides, respectively. The bucket has a hinged lid. In the middle of the lid are eight vent holes, each measuring 1 inch in diameter. The vent holes are covered with an activated carbon filter pad that measures 3-1/2 inches by 3-1/2 and is designed to prevent odors. The carbon filter is covered by a plastic housing that has thirty-six vent holes on its top surface, each with a diameter of 7/16th of an inch. The plastic housing is removable, so that the carbon filter can be replaced. The plastic housing snaps into four of the holes on the lid of the bucket to stay secure.

Replacement carbon filter – VPN# 0796.90E. This item consists of three replacement activated carbon filter pads, packaged together for retail sale. Each pad measures 3-1/2 inches by 3-1/2 inches. The replacement filters are sold separate from the bucket.

The compost bucket/carbon filter is considered to be a composite good within the meaning of General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 3. The compost bucket is used to collect and hold kitchen scraps. When full, the scraps are carried to the outside garden or compost pile for composting into fertilizer. The bucket provides the ability to collect, hold and carry. The carbon filter serves the subsidiary role of preventing odors while the scraps are being held in the bucket. Therefore, it is the opinion of this office that the plastic bucket provides this item with the essential character within the meaning of GRI 3(b).

The applicable subheading for VPN# 0790.61E will be 3924.90.5600, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for…other household articles…of plastics: other: other. The rate of duty will be 3.4 percent ad valorem.

The applicable subheading for VPN# 0796.90E will be 6815.10.0000, HTSUS, which provides for nonelectrical articles of graphite or other carbon. The rate of duty will be free.

Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 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 Gary Kalus at (646) 733-3055.


Robert B. Swierupski
National Commodity Specialist Division