Cattle (producers) & livestock (producers) charge

​​​​​​​Important—You can lodge your Cattle and Livestock (Producers) Export Charge return online.

The cattle producers charge was first introduced 1 February 1991 and the livestock producers charge was first introduced 17 Dec​ember 1997.

Cattle, other than dairy cattle, that are exported from Australia, will attract the cattle (producers) charge if the cattle were purchased by the exporter and the exporter owns the cattle for 60 days or more (starting on the date of purchase and ending on the date of export); or the period for which the cattle must remain in quarantine before being exported, whichever period is longer.

Goats, lambs and sheep that are exported from Australia will attract the livestock (producers) charge if the livestock were purchased by the exporter and the exporter owns the livestock for 30 days or more (starting on the date of purchase and ending on the date of export); or a period for which the livestock must remain in quarantine before being exported, whichever period is longer.

Animal Health Australia (AHA), Meat & Livestock Australia, and the National Residue Survey (NRS) are responsible for the expenditure of the cattle (producers) and livestock (producers) charge.

Cattle (producers) and livestock (producers) charge rates

Cattle means bovine animals other than buffalo. A cow with a calf at foot are together taken to be a single head of cattle.

Lot-fed cattle are cattle that are, or are likely to be, used in the production of grain-fed beef.

A bobby calf means a bovine animal (other than a buffalo) which at the time of export:

  1. Had or has a liveweight that did not or does not exceed 80 kilograms
  2. Did not have its liveweight determined at the time when it was exported but which, in the opinion of the intermediary, would, if slaughtered at that time, have constituted or constitute a carcase whose dressed weight would not have exceeded or would not exceed 40kg.

Dairy cattle means cattle, that, if not exported from Australia, would be likely to be held on a licensed dairy premises for a purpose that is related to commercial milk production, including but without limiting to bulls, calves and replacement heifers.

Livestock means goats, lambs that have not cut a permanent incisor tooth and sheep.

The cattle (producers) charge and the livestock (producers) charge comprises AHA membership, Emergency Animal Disease Response (EADR), marketing, NRS testing and research and development (R&D), as shown in the tables below:

Commodity – cattle (producers)Animal Health AustraliaEmergency Animal Disease ResponseNational Residue TestingMarketingResearch and DevelopmentTotal
Cattle13 cents
per head
$0.0029 cents
per head
$3.66
per head
92 cents
per head
$5.00
per head
Lot-fed cattle13 cents
per head
$0.0029 cents
per head
$3.66
per head
92 cents
per head
$5.00
per head
Bobby calves-$0.0026 cents
per head
48 cents
per head
16 cents
per head
90 cents
per head
Commodity – livestock (producers)Animal Health AustraliaEmergency Animal Disease ResponseNational Residue TestingMarketingResearch and DevelopmentTotal
Goats4.5 cents
per head
$0.006 cents
per head
10.5 cents per head16.7 cents
per head
37.7 cents per head
Lambs – less than or equal to $751.2 per cent of the sale price0 per cent of the sale price0.10667 per cent of the sale price1.2 per cent of the sale price0.4933 per cent of the sale price2 per cent of the sale price
Lambs – greater than $7515 cents per head$0.008 cents per head90 cents per head37 cents per head$1.50 per head
Sheep – less than or equal to $100.18 per cent of the sale price0 per cent of the sale price0.18 per cent of the sale price0.87 per cent of the sale price0.77 per cent of the sale price2 per cent of the sale price
Sheep – greater than $101.8 cents per head$0.001.8 cents per head8.7 cents per head7.7 cents per head 20 cents per head

The cattle (producers) charge is calculated per head. The livestock (producers) charge is calculated per head or as a percentage of the sale price. GST is not applied to Australian Government charges.

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

A producer, the person who owns the cattle or livestock immediately before export from Australia is liable to pay the charge.

If you produce cattle or livestock and you export your cattle or livestock through an exporting agent, the amount of charge they pay to the department on your behalf can be recovered from you by offset or otherwise.

If you are an exporting agent of cattle or livestock you must lodge a return and make a payment to the department. You can recover from the producer the amount of charge paid to the department by offset or otherwise.

If you export cattle or livestock—that is, you own the cattle or livestock at the time of export, you must lodge a return and make a payment to the department.

Exemptions from the cattle export charge

The cattle (producers) charge does not apply to exported dairy cattle.

The livestock (producers) charge does not apply to exported lambs or sheep that are valued at less than $5.00.

How do I lodge a cattle export charge return?

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

To lodge your return you must complete a manual cattle (producers) & livestock (producers) return form.

Return and payment dates

IMPORTANT: If you pay your levy late you will incur a penalty that is calculated daily at a compounding rate of two (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 cattle (producers) and livestock (producers) charges are based on a financial year.

Monthly returns and payments

Monthly returns and payments must be lodged with the department within 28 days after the end of that month.

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

What must be included in my cattle (producers) return?

As a producer who exported cattle in a month, your return for that 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. Australian Business Number (ABN), or if you are a company the Australian Company Number (ACN)
  2. Period to which the return relates
  3. The following information for cattle, the:
    1. Total amount of charge payable, and
    2. Total amount of charge paid.
  4. The following information for bobby calves, the:
    1. Number of bobby calves exported
    2. Number of bobby calves on which charge is not payable were exported, and
    3. Number of chargeable bobby calves exported.
  5. The following information for lot-fed cattle, the:
    1. Number of lot‑fed cattle exported
    2. Number of lot‑fed cattle on which charge is not payable were exported, and
    3. Number of lot‑fed cattle on which charge is payable were exported.
  6. The following information for cattle other than lot-fed cattle and bobby calves, the:
    1. Number of cattle exported
    2. Number of cattle on which charge is not payable were exported, and
    3. Number of chargeable cattle exported.

What must be included in my livestock (producers) return?

As a producer who exported livestock in a month, your return for that 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. Australian Business Number (ABN), or if you are a company the Australian Company Number (ACN)
  2. Period to which the return relates
  3. The following information for goats, the:
    1. Number of goats were exported
    2. Total value of the goats
    3. Number of goats on which charge is not payable were exported
    4. Number of chargeable goats were exported
    5. Rate of charge payable on the chargeable goats
    6. Amount of charge payable on the chargeable goats, and
    7. Amount of charge paid for the chargeable goats.
  4. The following information for lambs, the:
    1. Number of lambs were exported
    2. Total value of the lambs
    3. Number of lambs on which charge is not payable were exported
    4. Number of chargeable lambs were exported
    5. Value per head of the chargeable lambs
    6. Rate of charge payable on the chargeable lambs
    7. Amount of charge payable on the chargeable lambs, and
    8. Amount of charge paid for the chargeable lambs.
  5. The following information for sheep, the:
    1. Number of sheep exported
    2. Total value of the sheep
    3. Number of sheep on which charge is not payable were exported
    4. Number of chargeable sheep exported
    5. Value per head of the chargeable sheep
    6. Amount of charge payable on the chargeable sheep, and
    7. Amount of charge paid for the chargeable sheep.

What records do I need to keep for the cattle (producers) charge?

As a producer who exported cattle in a month, you must keep records for five (5) years, setting out for each month, the:

  1. Total amount of charge payable
  2. Total amount of charge paid
  3. Bills of lading or similar documents showing details of cattle exported
  4. Total live-weight, in kilograms, of cattle exported
  5. For each consignment exported, records of the:
    1. Full name and business address or residential address of the person to whom the cattle were exported, and
    2. Date when the consignment was entered for export.
  6. The following information for bobby calves, the:
    1. Number of bobby calves exported
    2. Number of bobby calves on which charge is not payable were exported, and
    3. Number of chargeable bobby calves exported.
  7. The following information for lot-fed cattle, the:
    1. Number of lot‑fed cattle exported
    2. Number of lot‑fed cattle on which charge is not payable were exported, and
    3. Number of lot‑fed cattle on which charge is payable were exported.
  8. The following information for cattle other than lot-fed cattle and bobby calves, the:
    1. Number of cattle exported
    2. Number of cattle on which charge is not payable were exported, and
    3. Number of chargeable cattle exported.
  9. A copy of the return.

What records do I need to keep for the livestock (producers) charge?

As a producer who exported livestock in a month, you must keep records for five (5) years, setting out for each month, the:

  1. Total amount of levy payable
  2. Total amount of levy paid
  3. Bills of lading or similar documents showing details of livestock exported
  4. For each consignment exported, records of the:
    1. Full name and business or residential address of the person to whom the cattle were exported, and
    2. Date when the consignment was entered for export.
  5. The following information for goats, the:
    1. Number of goats were exported
    2. Total value of the goats
    3. Number of goats on which charge is not payable were exported
    4. Number of chargeable goats were exported
    5. Rate of charge payable on the chargeable goats
    6. Amount of charge payable on the chargeable goats, and
    7. Amount of charge paid for the chargeable goats.
  6. The following information for lambs, the:
    1. Number of lambs were exported
    2. Total value of the lambs
    3. Number of lambs on which charge is not payable were exported
    4. Number of chargeable lambs were exported
    5. Value per head of the chargeable lambs
    6. Rate of charge payable on the chargeable lambs
    7. Amount of charge payable on the chargeable lambs, and
    8. Amount of charge paid for the chargeable lambs.
  7. The following information for sheep, the:
    1. Number of sheep exported
    2. Total value of the sheep
    3. Number of sheep on which charge is not payable were exported
    4. Number of chargeable sheep exported
    5. Value per head of the chargeable sheep
    6. Amount of charge payable on the chargeable sheep, and
    7. Amount of charge paid for the chargeable sheep.
  8. A copy of the return

Primary Industries Legislation

The cattle (producers) and livestock (producers) charge is provided for under the:

Primary Industries (Customs) Charges Act 1999

National Residue Survey (Customs) Levy Act 1998, 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 obligations under legislation.