Dairy Trade Practices

Dairy Trade Practices are governed by Wisconsin Statute Section 100.201, Wis. Stats. and Wisconsin Administrative Code Chapter ATCP 103.  Key provisions of these regulations include but aren't limited to:

  • "Selected Dairy Products" is defined as:  Milk, skim milk, fortified milk, flavored skim milk, buttermilk, cream, sour cream, half and half, whipping cream, whipped cream, cottage cheese, ice cream, ice milk, sherbet, custard, water ices, quiescently frozen dessert novelties manufactured from such products, low-fat milk, yogurt or yoghurt, and frozen yogurt. 

  • Wholesalers must publish a Price List for their selected dairy products, including: 

    • Effective date

    • Delivery terms

    • Discount/Rebate schedules

  • Wholesalers may not discriminate in price between different purchasers of select dairy products where the effect of such discrimination may be to lessen competition.

  • Wholesalers may not make payments to retailers as rental for the storage or display of selected dairy products.

  • With certain exceptions, wholesalers may not furnish, sell, lease or rent of equipment for the storage and display of selected dairy products.

  • Wholesalers may not extend credit to retailers in excess of 30 days payable 15 days thereafter.

  • Any payments, discounts, rebates, allowances, etc., that wholesalers offer to retailers (or other persons) must be offered to all retailers on a proportionately equal basis.

  • A Dairy Trade Practices Monthly Report and Fee Statement along with appropriate fees must be submitted to the Department for the prior month's sales in the state of Wisconsin.

Enforcement of the Law

Compliance examinations of dairy wholesalers are routinely conducted and authorized under Wis. Stat. § 100.201.  Compliance is established through the review of records such as: price lists, sales agreements, accounting system audits, and retailer invoices. 

Penalties

Penalties for violations of this law may range from: an agency-issued cease and desist order to a court-ordered civil forfeiture of $100 to $5,000 per violation. Court actions are generally commenced by the district attorney in the county where the alleged violation occurred.  Companies injured by a violation of this law may also sue privately for treble damages.

Questions?

Contact Dairy Trade Practices at (608) 224-4992 for assistance.