This paper studies the legal sugar cartel in Austria–Hungary in 1891-1914. I analyse the cartel formation prior to 1891 that
was enabled by an excise tax. The cartel started with simple annual quotas and – despite breakdowns – learned to adapt to
inventory demand, entry, internal coordination problems and lowered import protection. Detailed qualitative evidence on the
inner workings and prices, opportunity costs and sales data on a monthly basis are discussed. The success of the cartel at
subsequent stages is evaluated.