Unfair Competition

Other Prohibited Trade Practices

The Trade Practices Section administers three industry-specific trade practice regulations.

  • Fermented Malt Beverages
    Chapter ATCP 102, Subchapter I, Wis. Adm. Code, prohibits brewers from discriminating in price to wholesalers.

  • Motor Fuel
    Chapter ATCP 102, Subchapter III, Wis. Adm. Code, prohibits suppliers and wholesalers of motor vehicle fuel from discriminating in price to their consumers.

  • Leaf Tobacco, Buying and Selling
    Chapter ATCP 104, Wis. Adm. Code, prohibits collusion and price fixing among buyers of leaf tobacco. It also prohibits growers and sellers of leaf tobacco from accepting secret bonuses or rebates which affect the final selling price of the leaf tobacco.

All three regulations are adopted under the authority of 100.20, Wis. Statutes, "Methods of competition and trade practices," otherwise know as the state's "Little FTC Act."

Penalties for violating any of the three listed regulation include agency issued cease and desist order and court issued injunctions. In addition, any person suffering pecuniary losses because of a violation of a previously issued injunction or cease and desist order may sue for double damages.

Enforcement Activities

Enforcement actions are generally prompted by complaints regarding the actions of competitors. Compliance with the law is established through interviews with witnesses and reviews of wholesaler records such as price lists, sales agreements, accounting system audits and retail invoices.

For additional information, please contact the Bureau of Trade Practices at (608) 224-4989 or 224-4925.