Wool levy and charge

​​​​Important—You can lodge your wool return online.

The wool levy was first introduced 1 July 1936. Wool that is produced in Australia and sold by the producer, used in the production of other goods, or that is exported will attract a levy or charge. Australian Wool Innovation manages the expenditure of the wool levy and charge.

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Wool levy and charge rates

Leviable wool means wool that is produced in Australia and that is obtained by a producer from shearing a sheep or lamb that has not undergone any process other than skirting, classing and baling.

The wool levy and charge rate comprises marketing and research and development (R&D), as shown in the table below:

Levy and charge componentLevy and charge rate
R&D and marketing2 per cent of the sale, or free-on-board, value

The wool levy and charge rate is calculated as a percentage of the sale value of the wool – that is, the price or amount paid for the wool net GST, handling, storage and transport costs. The wool charge is calculated as a percentage of the free-on-board value of the wool immediately before export and is not payable if the levy has already been applied. GST is not applied to Australian Government levies and charges.

Example: for unprocessed wool, the sale value is the price paid for the wool. Or for processed wool, the amount that would have been paid for the wool if the wool had first been sold before processing. That is, if unprocessed wool of the same quality is sold on the same day at one market, the market price for that wool on that day at that market, or at a market that is closest to the processes establishment at which the wool was processed, or in any other case, the value of the wool immediately before processing.

Do I need to lodge a return and make a payment?

The producer, the person who owns the wool immediately after it is removed from the sheep or lamb is liable to pay the wool levy or charge.

If you produce wool and sell your wool to someone other than to an intermediary, including a first purchaser or processor, you must lodge a return and make a payment to the department.

If you produce wool and sell your wool through an intermediary, including a first purchaser, wool broker, or processor, the amount of levy or charge they pay to the department on your behalf can be recovered from you by offset or otherwise.

If you are an intermediary, including as a first purchaser, wool broker or processor, you must lodge a return and make a payment to the department. You can recover from the producer the amount of levy or charge paid to the department, by offset or otherwise.

If you export wool – that is, you are the person who owns the wool at the time of export - you must lodge a return and make a payment to the department.

Wool producer statistics

If you lodge a wool return and make a payment to the department you must also complete and lodge wool production statistics to accompany your return and payment. The wool producer statistics form is available through Levies Online. Alternatively, if you lodge a manual return form you can download the wool producer statistics form to complete on your desktop.

Exemptions from paying the wool levy and charge

No exemptions apply to the wool levy and charge.

How do I lodge a wool return?

You must register with the department to receive a unique LRS number before you can lodge your first return.

To lodge your return online, access Levies Online. Alternatively, you can complete a manual wool return form.

Return and payment dates

IMPORTANT: If you pay your levy or charge late you will incur a penalty that is calculated daily at a compounding rate of 2 per cent of the unpaid amount each month, including any penalties you have already accrued until you have paid the outstanding amount in full.

The wool levy and charge is based on a financial year.

Monthly returns and payments

Monthly returns and payments must be lodged with the department within 28 days of the end of the month in which the transaction took place.

Example: for the month of July, the return and payment is due to the department on or before 28 August.

Annual return and payment

As a wool levy and charge payer, other than an exporter or exporting agent, you may be eligible to lodge your return and make a payment to the department once a financial year, that is on or before 28 August in the next financial year.

Example: the 2017-18 annual return and payment must be made on or before 28 August 2018.

To be eligible for an annual return and payment, you must have reasonable grounds to believe that the total amount of wool which you are likely to deal in, in a financial year, amounts to less than $500. You must also make an application to the Secretary of the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. If you would like to make an application please contact the department’s Levies Office in your state or territory.

What must be included in my return?

As a producer of wool, who sold wool to someone other than to a first purchaser, processor, or through a selling agent or buying agent your return for a month or levy year must include:

  1. Your personal details, including:
    1. Full name
    2. Business or residential address, not the address of a post office box or post office bag
    3. Post office box or post office bag, and
    4. Australian Business Number (ABN), or if you are a company the Australian Company Number (ACN)
  2. Period to which the return relates
  3. For each person to whom you sold wool, the:
    1. Person’s full name, postal address, and ABN, if any, and if the person is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool sold to the person
    3. Sale value of the wool, and
    4. Amount of levy paid.
  4. For wool used in the production of other goods, the:
    1. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool so used
    2. Sale value of the wool, and
    3. Amount of levy paid.
  5. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool sold or used
  6. Total sale value of the wool, and
  7. Total amount of levy paid.

As a processor of wool, your return for a month or levy year must include:

  1. Your personal details, including:
    1. Full name
    2. Business or residential address, not the address of a post office box or post office bag
    3. Post office box or post office bag, and
    4. ABN, or if you are a company the ACN
  2. Period to which the return relates
  3. For each producer on whose behalf you processed wool, the:
    1. Producer’s full name, postal address, ABN, if any, and if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2.  Total amount (in kilograms) of wool processed for the producer
    3. Sale vale of wool processed
    4. Amount of levy paid
  4. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool processed
  5. Total sale value of wool processed, and
  6. Total amount of levy paid.

As a first purchaser, buying agent or selling agent of wool, your return for a month or levy year must include:

  1. Your personal details, including:
    1. Full name
    2. Business or residential address, not the address of a post office box or post office bag
    3. Post office box or post office bag, and
    4. ABN, or if you are a company the ACN
  2. Period to which the return relates
  3. For each producer from whom you bought or sold wool, the:
    1. Producer’s full name, postal address, ABN, if any, and if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool bought or sold
    3. Sale value of the wool
    4. Amount of levy paid
  4. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool bought or sold
  5. Total sale value of wool bought or sold, and
  6. Total amount of levy paid.

As a person who exported wool, your return for a month must include:

  1. Your personal details, including:
    1. Full name
    2. Business or residential address, not the address of a post office box or post office bag
    3. Post office box or post office bag, and
    4. ABN, or if you are a company the ACN
  2. Period to which the return relates
  3. For each producer for whom wool was exported, the:
    1. Producer’s full name, postal address, ABN, if any, or if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2. Amount, in kilograms of wool exported for the producer
    3. Free-on-board value of the wool
    4. Amount of charge paid for the wool
  4. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool exported
  5. Total free-on-board value of the wool, and
  6. Total amount of charge paid.

What records do I need to keep?

As a wool producer who sold wool or used wool in the production of other goods in a levy year, you must keep records for five (5) years, setting out for each month of the levy year:

  1. For each person to whom the producer sold wool (other than a sale to a first purchaser or processor or through a buying agent and selling agent), the persons:
    1. Full name, postal address, ABN, if any, and if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool sold to the person
    3. Sale value of the wool, and
    4. Amount of levy paid.
  2. For wool used in the production of other goods, the:
    1. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool so used
    2. Sale value of the wool, and
    3. Amount of levy paid.
  3. Total amount (in kilogram) of wool sold or used by the producer
  4. Total sale value of the wool, and
  5. Total amount of levy paid.

As a processor of wool in a levy year you must keep records for five (5) years, setting out for each month of the levy year:

  1. For each producer on whose behalf you processed wool, the persons:
    1. Full name, postal address, ABN, if any, or if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool processed for the producer
    3. Sale value of the wool, and
    4. Amount of levy paid.
  2. For wool owned and processed by the processor, the:
    1. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool processed
    2. Sale value of the wool, and
    3. Amount of levy paid.
  3. For each person (other than a producer) on whose behalf the processor processed wool, the persons:
    1. Full name, postal address, ABN, if any, or if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
    2. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool processed for the person
    3. Sale value of the wool, and
    4. Amount of levy paid.
  4. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool processed
  5. Total sale value of the wool processed, and
  6. Total amount of levy paid.

As an exporter of wool in a levy year you must keep records for five (5) years, setting out for each month of the levy year, the producers:

  1. Full name, postal address, ABN, if any, or if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
  2. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool exported for the producer
  3. Free-on-board value of the wool, and
  4. Amount of charge paid.

You must also keep records for, the:

  1. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool exported
  2. Total free-on-board value of wool exported
  3. Total amount of charge paid, and
  4. Bills of lading or similar documents showing details of the wool exported.

As a first purchaser, buying agent, selling agent or exporting agent who has bought or sold wool in a levy year, you must keep records for five (5) years, setting out for each month of the levy year, the producers:

  1. Full name, postal address, ABN, if any, or if the producer is a company and does not have an ABN – its ACN
  2. Amount (in kilograms) of wool bought or sold
  3. Sale value of the wool
  4. Amount of levy paid
  5. Total amount (in kilograms) of wool bought or sold
  6. Total sale value of the wool bought or sold, and
  7. Total amount of levy paid.

Primary Industries Legislation

The wool levy and charge is provided for under the:

Primary Industries (Excise) Levies Act 1999

Primary Industries (Customs) Charges Act 1999, and

Primary Industries Levies and Charges Collection Act 1991.


This information is a guide only. If you are required to lodge a return and make a payment to the department it is your responsibility to remain aware of your obligation under legislation.

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