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CamelBak Loses Tariff Dispute Case

Published May 12, 2010

PETALUMA, CA (BRAIN)—CamelBak Products LLC has lost a case that sought to reclassify hydration packs imported from the Philippines in 2003 as "insulated food or beverage bags" that would have lowered duties more than 10 percent for the company.

The case that went before the U.S. Court of International Trade would have lowered duties from 17.8 percent to 7 percent. CamelBak imported the packs at issue in September and October of 2003 as “travel, sports and similar” bags and then filed a protest, which Customs denied. CamelBak then filed suit.

The court ruled in favor of the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, which argued the merchandise is properly classified as “travel, sports and similar bags.” The ruling granted the government’s motion for summary judgment and agreed with its argument that the insulation sleeve in the packs did not change their “essential character” enough to justify placing them under the other tariff classification.

The case involves 10 models of hydration packs, including the Scout, M.U.L.E., SnoDAWG, SnoBound, Isis, and H.A.W.G. “Each of the models features both a “cargo” compartment (designed to hold food, clothing, gear, and other supplies) and a “reservoir” (bladder) compartment, which is surrounded by closed-cell polyethylene foam and is designed to carry and maintain the temperature of water or some other beverage,” the court’s decision stated.

CamelBak said it's considering its legal options.

Topics associated with this article: Tariffs

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