Why is there a levy on mushrooms?
The Australian Government introduces levies and export charges at the request of industry. These levies variously fund research and development, marketing, residue testing, plant and animal biosecurity programs and emergency responses for industry.
The Agaricus mushroom levy funds Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited (HIAL) Agaricus mushroom research and development (R&D). To find out more, visit Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited.
What is the levy payable on?
Levy is payable on Agaricus mushrooms produced in Australia where the producer either sells the product or uses it in the production of other goods.
Who pays the levy? Who submits returns?
The producer (the person who grows the Agaricus mushrooms) is liable to pay the levy.
If the producer buys mushroom spawn from sellers, they must pay levy to the seller. This seller must pay levy and submit all return forms to the Department of Agriculture - Levies quarterly.
If the producer produces their own spawn or purchases spawn from overseas, they must pay levy and submit all return forms to the Department of Agriculture - Levies monthly.
Download a return form or contact your Department of Agriculture - Levies state office.
What is the levy rate on mushrooms?
The levy rate is $4.32 per kilogram of mushroom spawn# (see ‘General information and definitions’).
Rates are current as at 1 July 2014.
Australian Government levies exclude GST.
Are there any exemptions from this levy?
Levy is not payable on every kilogram over 370 000 kilograms of mushroom spawn a producer produces or purchases for the production of Agaricus mushrooms in a levy year*.
When is the payment due?
The mushroom producer must lodge returns monthly if:
- they produce and use mushroom spawn for mushroom production, or
- they purchase mushroom spawn from an overseas seller and use that mushroom spawn for mushroom production.
The return together with payment must be submitted to the Department of Agriculture - Levies within 28 days of the end of the month in which the levy took place. For example, the return and payment for the month of July are due on or before 28 August.
Equal monthly instalments
Producers who produce or purchase more than 370 000 kilograms of mushroom spawn in a levy year* for the production of Agaricus mushrooms may apply to pay their levy liability in equal monthly instalments during the levy year.
Please contact your local Department of Agriculture - Levies state office for more information on eligibility to pay levy in equal monthly instalments.
Sellers of mushroom spawn must lodge returns and payments quarterly.
The return together with payment must be submitted to the Department of Agriculture - Levies within 28 days of the end of the quarters of March, June, September and December. For example, the return and payment for the quarter ending 30 June—that is, for the months of April, May and June—are due on or before 28 July.
Where sellers of mushroom spawn have not received levy payment from buyers by the due date, they must include with their return contact details of those buyers and the amount of levy they owe.
General information and definitions
The levy rate is calculated per kilogram of mushroom spawn#.
# ‘Mushroom spawn’ is Agaricus spp mycelia contained in a medium and used for the inoculation of phase 2 substrate, including—but not limited to—grain spawn, casing inoculum and inoculated supplement.
*A levy year is a financial year—that is, 1 July to 30 June.
What legislation covers this levy?
A legislative framework of imposition, collection and disbursement legislation authorises and supports Australia’s primary industries levies system. These are the relevant Acts:
Primary Industries (Excise) Levies Act 1999
Primary Industries Levies and Charges Collection Act 1991
Please note that, under section 27 of the Primary Industries Levies and Charges Collection Act 1991, an authorised Department of Agriculture officer can release the names and addresses of levy payers to industry bodies and levy recipient organisations.
Download the legislation from ComLaw or call CanPrint Information Services on 02 6293 8383 to purchase a copy.
This information sheet is a guide only and does not substitute for the relevant legislation.