Thursday, January 13, 2022

Made in USA Sourcing Directory

The U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Textiles and Apparel (OTEXA), maintains a Made in the USA Directory (trade.gov) as a tool to assist domestic and foreign buyers sourcing U.S.-made textiles, apparel, footwear, and travel goods. The Directory is a listing of over 500 U.S. manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, and producers and receives over 5000 web visits per month.

Demand for Made-in-USA products is gaining popularity with consumers, retailers, and foreign buyers. The Directory will be a useful tool to help expand your company’s visibility and customer base. We invite you to register your company on the Directory – it’s FREE! To register - go to the link: Made in the USA Directory (trade.gov) and choose Register as a U.S.A. Company. Fill out the information that you want posted as your listing. You can also search the listings.

To qualify, a vendor must be a company established in the United States with at least one manufacturing plant, assembly plant, or distribution center that manufactures, assembles, or distributes U.S.-made textile, apparel, footwear or travel goods products.

Revocation of Three Ruling Letters and Revocation of Treatment Relating to the Tariff Classification of Child Car Seat Cushions

Binding Ruling Letters NY N132069, NY N245061, and NY N246761, CBP classified child car seat cushions in heading 9401, HTSUS, specifically in subheading 9401.90.50, HTSUS, which provides for “[s]eats (other than those of heading 9402), whether or not convertible into beds, and parts thereof: [p]arts: [o]ther: [o]ther”. CBP has reviewed the aforementioned rulings and determined the ruling letters to be in error. It is now CBP’s position that child car seat cushions are properly classified in heading 9404, HTSUS, specifically in subheading 9404.90.20, HTSUS, which provides for “[m]attress supports; articles of bedding and similar furnishing (for example, mattresses, quilts, eiderdowns, cushions, pouffes and pillows) fitted with springs or stuffed or internally fitted with any material or of cellular rubber or plastics, whether or not covered: [o]thers: [p]illows, cushions and similar furnishings: [o]thers”.

CBP analysis and conclusion are found in the Customs Bulletin for January 12, 2022 (Vol. 5, No. 1) beginning on Page 40.

Children’s Robes Recalled by HulovoX Due to Violation of Federal Flammability Standards and Burn Hazard

Description: This recall involves children’s robes. The long-sleeved robes are made of 100% micro polyester and were available in sizes 3T through 12. The robes were sold in twenty-two multicolored tie-dye and rainbow colorways. The robes have a sewn-in side seam belt, internal button closure and some have a hood with unicorn décor features such as a mane, ears and horn. The sewn-in neck label states the fiber content, washing instructions and “Made in China.” The sewn-in side seam label states the garment’s size.

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled robes away from children and stop using them. Consumers who purchased the garments from Amazon.com will be contacted through Amazon’s messaging platform and provided prepaid mailers to return the products for a refund. Consumers can also contact HulovoX to request a postage prepaid mailer to return the products for a full refund.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported

Sold At:: Online at Amazon.com from January 2021 through May 2021 for about $30.

Manufactured In: China

Retailer: HulovoX, of Zhejiang in China

Recall number: 22-053

More information and photos HERE.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Monday is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in the U.S.A

Monday, January 17th, U.S. government offices, and much of private business other than retail, will close in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

When President Ronald Reagan, on November 2, 1983, signed into law the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday he reminded his listeners that—

Martin Luther King was born in 1929 in an America where, because of the color of their skin, nearly one in ten lived lives that were separate and unequal…taught in segregated schools…could find only poor jobs, toiling for low wages…refused entry into hotels and restaurants, made to use separate facilities. In a nation that proclaimed liberty and justice for all, too many black Americans were living with neither.

If we consider the time from the arrival of the first slaves in the Virginia Colony in 1619 to the achievement of full civil rights for all African-Americans in every one of the 50 states in the 1960s, it was a very long struggle to achieve full civil equality. The modern African-American Civil Rights Movement that Dr. King was so important a leader in, on the other hand, was, for a major societal and legal change, relatively swift. It is generally considered to occupy the period from 1955 (Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott) to 1968 (King assassination and the Poor People's March). To those in the struggle it was long. But looking back, from 1955 to 1983, not quite 30 years, is, roughly, a generation. In one generation we advanced from a nation that tolerated legal discrimination against part of our citizenry based on the color of their skin, to a nation in which such as thing is not only forbidden, but absolutely unthinkable. It was Dr. King, more than any other single leader in the civil rights movement, who, with his insistence on non-violence, and his prophet-like call to the conscience of White American, who brought about such a marvelous and much needed change. That is why he is up there with Columbus and Washington as one of just three men who so influenced our nation that we honor them with a federal holiday.

President Reagan went on to remark that "Dr. King had awakened something strong and true, a sense that true justice must be colorblind." And Mr. Reagan pointed to both the progress made—and yet to be made—in the struggle for an America that lives up to her noble sentiment that all men are created equal, citing the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965. Reagan, as he so often did, then called on Americans to embrace and enlarge upon their better nature, and exhorted his listeners—

But most important, there was not just a change of law; there was a change of heart. The conscience of America had been touched . Across the land, people had begun to treat each other not as blacks and whites, but as fellow Americans.

Traces of bigotry still mar America. So, each year on Martin Luther King Day, let us not only recall Dr. King, but rededicate ourselves to the Commandments he believed in and sought to live every day: Thou shall love thy God with all thy heart, and thou shall love thy neighbor as thyself. And I just have to believe that all of us —- if all of us, young and old, Republicans and Democrats, do all we can to live up to those Commandments, then we will see the day when Dr. King's dream comes true.

Army and Air Force Coat and Trouser Contract Awarded

Puerto Rico Apparel Manufacturing Corp., Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, has been awarded a maximum $12,981,967 modification (P00040) exercising the third one-year option period of a one-year base contract (SPE1C1-19-D-1127) with four one-year option periods for various types of coats and trousers. This is a firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract. Location of performance is Puerto Rico, with a Jan. 15, 2023, ordering period end date. Using military services are Army and Air Force. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2022 through 2023 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

CBP Issues Broker Guidance for CAFTA Cumulation

On January 11, 2022, CBP issued QB 22-105 CAFTA Cumulation

Apparel goods of chapter 62, cut or knit-to-shape, and sewn or otherwise assembled in a CAFTA-DR country, utilizing materials from Mexico, as provided for in chapter 98, subchapter XXII, U.S. Note 21

QUOTA PERIOD:

January 1, 2022, through December 31, 2022

OPENING DATE:

Monday January 3, 2022

Limits
LIMIT 
100,000,000 SME Goods of chapter 62 sub-limits use HTS1 9822.05.11 for quota limited entries
45,000,000 SMEsublimit for trousers, skirts, and parts thereof, of cotton or man-made fibers, or subject to cotton or man-made fiber restraints (see chapter 98, subchapter XXII, U.S. note 21(b)(i) for qualifying HTS numbers.)
20,000,000 SME SME sublimit for cotton blue denim trousers and skirts (see chapter 98, subchapter XXII, U.S. note 21(b)(ii) for qualifying HTS numbers.) 
1,000,000 SMEsublimit for apparel goods, not knitted or crocheted, containing 36 percent or more by weight of wool or subject to wool restraints (see chapter 98, subchapter XXII, U.S. note 21(b)(iii) for qualifying HTS numbers.)

 

HTS NUMBERS:

HTS NUMBERS
First Tariff FieldSecond Tariff Field
9822.05.11See chapter 98, subchapter XXII, U.S. Note 21(b) for details
9822.05.13See chapter 98, subchapter XXII, U.S. Note 21(c) for details of certain wool garments that are exempt from the limit.

REPORTING INSTRUCTIONS:

Use entry type code 02, 06, 07, 12, 23, 32, 38, or 52

Report in units of measure as shown in the HTSUS.

Read more HERE.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Notice of Continuation and Request for Nominations for the Trade Advisory Committee on Africa

On January 11, 2021, the Office of the United States Trade Representative published in the Federal Register (87 FR 1473) Notice of Continuation and Request for Nominations for the Trade Advisory Committee on Africa.

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) is establishing a new four-year charter term and accepting applications from qualified individuals interested in serving as a member of the Trade Advisory Committee on Africa (TACA). The TACA is a trade advisory committee that provides general policy advice and guidance to the U.S. Trade Representative on trade policy and development matters that have a significant impact on the countries of sub-Saharan Africa.

USTR will accept nominations on a rolling basis for membership on the TACA for the four-year charter term beginning in March 2022. To ensure consideration before the new charter term, you should submit your application by February 4, 2022.

The TACA is a discretionary trade advisory committee established to provide general policy advice to the U.S. Trade Representative on trade policy and development matters that have a significant impact on the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. More specifically, the TACA provides general policy advice on issues that may affect the countries of sub-Saharan Africa including: (1) Negotiating objectives and bargaining positions before entering into trade agreements; (2) the impact of the implementation of trade agreements; (3) matters concerning the operation of any trade agreement once entered into; and (4) other matters arising in connection with the development, implementation, and administration of the trade policy of the United States. The TACA also facilitates the goals and objectives of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and assists in maintaining ongoing discussions with sub-Saharan African trade and agriculture ministries and private sector organizations on issues of mutual concern, including regional and international trade concerns and World Trade Organization issues. The TACA meets as needed, at the call of the U.S. Trade Representative or their designee, or two-thirds of the TACA members, depending on various factors such as the level of activity of trade negotiations and the needs of the U.S. Trade Representative.

AAFA Urges Biden to Act on Shipping Crisis, Provide Relief

On Janaury 10, 2021, the American Apparel and Footwear Association sent a letter applauding President Biden for shining a spotlight on the shipping crisis and taking long-term action to prevent the next shipping crisis. However, the letter notes that the shipping crisis is not over and is, in fact, getting worse. AAFA urged President Biden to take more action now, involving ALL stakeholders and providing real and immediate solutions, to bring today’s crisis under control AND provide immediate relief to businesses as costs, and inflation, spiral out of control.

Monday, January 10, 2022

Army and Air Force Apparel Contract Awarded

Carter Enterprises, Brooklyn, New York, has been awarded a maximum $21,850,587 modification (P00008) exercising the second one-year option period of a one-year base contract (SPE1C1-20-D-1206) with three one-year option periods for coats and trousers. This is a firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract. Location of performance is New York, with a Jan. 15, 2023, ordering period end date. Using military services are Army and Air Force. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2022 through 2023 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Friday, January 7, 2022

Army and Air Force Trouser Contract Awarded

San Antonio Lighthouse for the Blind, San Antonio, Texas, has been awarded an $8,543,850 modification (P00001) exercising the first one-year option period of a one-year base contract (SPE1C1-21-D-B101) with two one-year option periods for flame retardant environmental ensemble/enhanced weather outer layer trousers. This is a firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract. Location of performance is Texas, with a Jan. 12, 2023, ordering period end date. Using military services are Army and Air Force. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2022 through 2023 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

OTEXA Complying with Made in the USA Labeling Standards webinar

Overview
  What you need to know about the Federal Trade Commission's Made in USA guidelines and California's Made in the USA regulations.
Objectives
  Learn requirements for Federal Trade Commission guidelines for labeling a product Made in the USA and California's Made in the USA regulations.
Event Information
  • Gain insights on the essentials of "Made in the USA" labeling from the FTC as well as California's statutory requirements for the "Made in USA" label
  • For a product to have a "Made in the USA" label, it must meet specific criteria outlined by the Federal Trade Commission.
  • The product's final assembly or processing must take place in the United States.
  • Labels matter and "Made in the USA" still evokes a sense of quality in the eyes of the consumer.
Please read the following information carefully:
  • The U.S. Commercial Service requires event registrants to accept specific Terms and Conditions and review Product Standards.
  • You will receive the log on link upon registration and in a reminder email the morning of the program.
  • Please log on 15 minutes prior to the start of the webinar to allow time to address any technical issues.
  • You will me muted during the webinar.
  • We will offer 15 minutes for oral questions at the end of the program. Questions may be submitted in advance or during the conference.
  • Date: January 19, 2022 Time: 2:00pm ET (11:00am PT) Duration: 60 minutes Cost: Free
  • Register HERE.

Connecticut and New York Companies Agree to Pay Over $900,000 for Providing Chinese-Made Containers to Department of Defense

On January 6, 2021, United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that SoNo International LLC (“SoNo”) and Ark Capital Equipment LLC (“Ark”) have agreed to jointly pay $904,000 to the federal government to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by supplying the Department of Defense with shipping containers made in China and/or made from Chinese steel. The Department of Defense contracted for its agencies to purchase American-made materials or materials manufactured in specified allied countries, such as South Korea. Instead, in one contract, SoNo and Ark allegedly had a third-party company change the identifying plates on 100 shipping containers made in China to make them appear to have been manufactured in South Korea. On two other contracts, SoNo’s supplier used Chinese steel, and SoNo and Ark allegedly failed to detect the deception before providing the United States military those containers.

“Americans have the right to know that their tax dollars are being spent to support American jobs and American policies,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “When the Department of Defense purchased this material for our warfighters, SoNo agreed to acquire material from and support manufacturers in America or our allied nations. The United States Attorney’s Office is ready to investigate and punish contractors who do not follow these clear rules.”

“Protecting the integrity of the Department of Defense (DoD) procurement process and supply chain is a top priority for the DoD Office of Inspector General Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS),” stated Special Agent in Charge Patrick J. Hegarty, DCIS Northeast Field Office. “The DCIS will continue to work with its law enforcement partners and the USAO-EDPA to hold DoD contractors accountable to contract requirements and ensure that quality products and services are provided to the U.S. military.”

This investigation was conducted as part of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania’s Affirmative Civil Enforcement Strike Force with investigators from DCIS, the Army Criminal Investigation Division, and the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, with assistance from Homeland Security Investigations and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Regulatory Audit and Agency Advisory Services. Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul W. Kaufman handled the investigation and settlement.

Read more HERE.

Army and Air Force Trouser Contract Awarded

Aurora Industries, Camuy, Puerto Rico, has been awarded a maximum $56,264,533 modification (P00024) exercising the third one-year option period of a one-year base contract (SPE1C1-19-D-1128) with three one-year option periods for various types of coats and trousers. This is a firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract. Location of performance is Puerto Rico, with a Jan. 10, 2023, ordering period end date. Using military services are Army and Air Force. Type of appropriation is fiscal 2022 through 2023 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Thursday, January 6, 2022

Penalties for Violations of Wool and Textiles Rules Increased

The Federal Trade Commission has adjusted the maximum civil penalty dollar amounts for violations of 16 provisions of law the agency enforces, as required by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015.

  • Section 7A(g)(1) of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C. 18a(g)(1) (premerger filing notification violations under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Improvements Act)—Increase from $43,792 to $46,517;
  • Section 11(l) of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C. 21(l) (violations of cease and desist orders issued under Clayton Act section 11(b))—Increase from $23,266 to $24,714;
  • Section 5(l) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. 45(l) (unfair or deceptive acts or practices)—Increase from $43,792 to $46,517;
  • Section 5(m)(1)(A) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. 45(m)(1)(A) (unfair or deceptive acts or practices)—Increase from $43,792 to $46,517;
  • Section 5(m)(1)(B) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. 45(m)(1)(B) (unfair or deceptive acts or practices)—Increase from $43,792 to $46,517;
  • Section 10 of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. 50 (failure to file required reports)— Increase from $576 to $612;
  • Section 5 of the Webb-Pomerene (Export Trade) Act, 15 U.S.C. 65 (failure by associations engaged solely in export trade to file required statements)—Increase from $576 to $612;
  • Section 6(b) of the Wool Products Labeling Act, 15 U.S.C. 68d(b) (failure by wool manufacturers to maintain required records)—Increase from $576 to $612;
  • Section 3(e) of the Fur Products Labeling Act, 15 U.S.C. 69a(e) (failure to maintain required records regarding fur products)—Increase from $576 to $612;
  • Section 8(d)(2) of the Fur Products Labeling Act, 15 U.S.C. 69f(d)(2) (failure to maintain required records regarding fur products)—Increase from $576 to $612;
  • Section 333(a) of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, 42 U.S.C. 6303(a) (knowing violations of EPCA § 332, including labeling violations)—Increase from $474 to $503;
  • Section 525(a) of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, 42 U.S.C. 6395(a) (recycled oil labeling violations)—Increase from $23,266 to $24,714;
  • Section 525(b) of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, 42 U.S.C. 6395(b) (willful violations of recycled oil labeling requirements)—Increase from $43,792 to $46,517;
  • Section 621(a)(2) of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. 1681s(a)(2) (knowing violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act)—Increase from $4,111 to $4,367;
  • Section 1115(a) of the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, Pub. L. No. 108-173, as amended by Pub. L. No. 115-263, 21 U.S.C. 355 note (failure to comply with filing requirements)—Increase from $15,482 to $16,445; and Section 814(a) of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, 42 U.S.C. 17304 (violations of prohibitions on market manipulation and provision of false information to federal agencies)—Increase from $1,246,249 to $1,323,791.

U.S. Terminates AGOA Trade Preference Program for Ethiopia, Mali and Guinea

On January 1, 2022, the United States terminated Ethiopia, Mali and Guinea from the AGOA trade preference program due to actions taken by each of their governments in violation of the AGOA Statute. The Biden-Harris Administration is deeply concerned by the unconstitutional change in governments in both Guinea and Mali, and by the gross violations of internationally recognized human rights being perpetrated by the Government of Ethiopia and other parties amid the widening conflict in northern Ethiopia. Each country has clear benchmarks for a pathway toward reinstatement and the Administration will work with their governments to achieve that objective.

United States Prevails in USMCA Dispute on Canadian Dairy Restrictions

On January 4, 2021, United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai announced that the United States has prevailed in the first dispute settlement panel proceeding ever brought under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). A USMCA panel agreed with the United States that Canada is breaching its USMCA commitments by reserving most of the in-quota quantity in its dairy tariff-rate quotas (TRQs) for the exclusive use of Canadian processors.

The United States requested that a panel be established on May 25, 2021 under Chapter 31 of the USMCA. The panel issued its final report to the Parties on December 20, 2021. Under USMCA rules, Canada has 45 days from the date of the final report to comply with the Panel’s findings. From January through October 2021, the United States exported $478 million of dairy products to Canada, which is the third largest export destination for U.S. dairy products.

Background

A tariff-rate quota applies a preferential rate of duty to an “in-quota” quantity of imports and a different rate to imports above that in-quota quantity. Under the USMCA, Canada has the right to maintain 14 TRQs on the following dairy products: milk, cream, skim milk powder, butter and cream powder, industrial cheeses, cheeses of all types, milk powders, concentrated or condensed milk, yogurt and buttermilk, powdered buttermilk, whey powder, products consisting of natural milk constituents, ice cream and ice cream mixes, and other dairy.

In notices to importers that Canada published in June and October 2020 and May 2021 for dairy TRQs, Canada set aside and reserved a percentage of the quota for processors and for so-called “further processors”, contrary to Canada’s USMCA commitments. As a result of this restriction, Canada has been undermining the value of its dairy TRQs for U.S. farmers and exporters since entry into force of the USMCA by limiting access to in-quota quantities negotiated under the Agreement.

USTR officials worked closely with staff from the U.S. Department of Agriculture throughout the case. A USMCA panel agreed with the United States that Canada’s allocation of dairy TRQs, specifically the set-aside of a percentage of each dairy TRQ exclusively for Canadian processors, is inconsistent with Canada’s commitment in Article 3.A.2.11(b) of the USMCA not to “limit access to an allocation to processors.” The Panel additionally found that the Agreement makes no distinction between initial processors and “further processors”, and that therefore, the restriction in Article 3.A.2.11(b) applies to all processors, including specific subsets.

A copy of the panel report is available HERE.

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Native Creation Recalls Sweaters Due to Violation of the Federal Lead Paint Ban

Description: This recall involves Native Creation Small Wool Sweaters for children sizes 0 to 8. The sweaters were sold with dark gray, blue or black as the base color with multi-colored patterns. The sweaters have a hood attached, a zipper along the front and draw strings at the top and bottom of the zipper path.

Redy: Consumers should immediately take the recalled sweater away from children and contact Native creation for a full refund.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported

Sold At Native Creation from December 2020 through January 2021 for about $29.

Manufactured In: Ecuador

Importer(s): Native Creation of Seattle, Washington

Recall number: 22-044

More information and photo HERE.