The U.S. International Trade Commission (“USITC”) announced on December 2, 2020 that it would begin monitoring imports of bell peppers and strawberries pursuant to Section 332 of the Tariff Act of 1930, following a request from the United States Trade Representative (“USTR”) Robert E. Lighthizer. The USITC will monitor imports of the subject products for a 90-day period and will have three weeks to prepare and submit a recommendation to the president with the appropriate trade remedies.

Interested parties may submit written submissions for the record no later than January 15, 2021. The USITC stated that at this time it is seeking submissions to enable its monitoring activities only. Specifically, the USITC is interested in information concerning imports, principal source countries, and the potential impact of the imports on the domestic industry. Additionally, the USITC expressed its interest in information regarding the condition of the domestic industry, production, employment, profits and losses, and other factors outlined in section 202(c) of the Trade Act. To the extent practical, data and information submitted should include the period 2016-2020 and any subsequent period.

The products in question fall under the following categories of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States:

  • Fresh or chilled strawberries: 0810.10;
  • Fresh or chilled bell peppers:
    • 0709.60.4015,
    • 0709.60.4025,
    • 0709.60.4065,
    • and 0709.60.4085

We will continue to monitor this situation and provide any updates. Husch Blackwell encourages those who may have questions or concerns on this issue to please contact the International Trade and Supply Chain team.