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The Miller-Tydings Act of 1937 exempted retail price maintenance agreements (fair trade provisions) in interstate commerce from federal antitrust laws. Under fair trade laws, manufacturers created resale price contracts with distributors that required their retailers within a given state to sell “fair-traded” products at the same price. Specifically, the Miller-Tydings Act, in effect, amended Section 1 of the Sherman Act. Miller-Tydings made legal contracts or agreements prescribing minimum prices for the resale of commodity products sold and shipped in interstate commerce bearing a label, trademark, brand, or name of the producer or distributor when such products are in free competition under local state law.

During the 1930s, “mom-and-pop” druggists, hardware and appliance merchants, and grocery stores began to experience competition from large chain store operations ...

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