WoolPoll review final report reveals more about woolgrowers levy

The final report of the WoolPoll Review delivered by the Department of Agriculture today makes 10 recommendations to improve procedures, bolster transparency, and clarify existing roles and responsibilities.

The review committee made a finding that WoolPoll is an appropriate and contemporary process that provides government with assurance about what wool levy payers want their levy rate to be.

It also claimed that stakeholders overwhelmingly support WoolPoll as an avenue for wool levy payers to have a say on their levy rate.

Among the recommendations was to shift the focus of engagement in the lead-up to future WoolPolls to more online activities, strengthen the WoolPoll Panel’s ability to execute its independent verification role, and to establish a set of pre-determined levy rate options to be put to levy payers.

The review also recommends that a possible shift to a five-yearly WoolPoll should be tested with woolgrowers at the 2021 poll.

Beyond WoolPoll, the review highlighted scope for stronger two-way dialogue between AWI and wool levy payers on issues relating to levy expenditure and investment, and greater collaboration with Meat and Livestock Australia.

The department claimed its review was conducted in close consultation with AWI and the wool industry, and claims it delivers on a recommendation made by the 2018 EY Review of AWI’s Performance and Governance.

According to the report, the findings align with the National Agricultural Innovation Agenda, a key part of how government is helping industry deliver on its long-term ambition to achieve $100 billion by 2030.

The department will work with AWI and its Wool Industry Consultation Panel to prepare a plan for adopting the recommendations, with most to be in place in time for the 2021 WoolPoll.

In 2019-20, Australia’s 60,000 wool producers contributed $2.7 billion in Australian wool exports. In 2019-20, AWI received $38.3 million in levies and $26.5 million in Commonwealth matching payments.

Any woolgrower that doesn’t agree with the direction that the department is embarking, can have their say at the 2021 WoolPoll.

A full copy of the final WoolPoll Review is available here