Australian Bureau of Statistics

Rate the ABS website
ABS Home > Statistics > By Release Date
1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2006  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 20/01/2006   
   Page tools: Print Print Page RSS Feed RSS Bookmark and Share Search this Product  
Contents >> Chapter 14 - Agriculture >> The wool industry

THE WOOL INDUSTRY

Australia is the world's largest wool producing country, accounting for about one quarter of total production. Wool production has been declining in Australia and the world for the past ten years, and is expected to continue to do so in the medium term. Since 1990 Australian wool production has halved, to around 509,600 tonnes in 2003-04. Almost all of Australia's wool is exported, the major markets being China, Italy, India and Taiwan.

WOOL PRODUCTION

Shorn greasy wool contains an appreciable amount of grease, dirt, vegetable matter and other material. The exact quantities of these impurities in the fleece vary with climatic and pastoral conditions, seasonal fluctuations and the breed and condition of the sheep. It is, however, the clean wool fibre that is ultimately consumed by the textile industry, and the term 'clean yield' is used to express the net wool fibre content present in greasy wool.

The gross value of wool produced in 2003-04 decreased to $2,397m (table 14.45), less than half the value recorded in 1988-89 ($5.9b), the peak year in the wool boom of the 1980s.

14.45 WOOL, Production and value

Shorn wool
Other wool(a)
Total
Gross value
’000 tonnes
’000 tonnes
’000 tonnes
$m

1997-98
640.7
48.9
689.6
2,753.9
1998-99
638.8
48.8
687.6
2,141.0
1999-2000
642.3
52.5
694.8
2,149.2
2000-01
589.9
55.3
645.1
2,541.2
2001-02
536.9
50.4
587.3
2,713.2
2002-03
503.0
48.1
551.1
3,317.8
2003-04
467.6
42.0
509.6
2,396.5

(a) Comprises dead and fellmongered wool, and wool exported on skins.

Source: Agricultural Commodities, Australia (7121.0); Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia (7503.0).


WOOL RECEIVALS

The total amounts of taxable wool received by brokers and purchased by dealers in recent years are shown in table 14.46. They exclude wool received by brokers on which tax had already been paid by other dealers (private buyers) or brokers.

14.46 TAXABLE WOOL RECEIVALS

Receivals

Brokers
Dealers
Total
Brokers as proportion
of total receivals
’000 tonnes
’000 tonnes
’000 tonnes
%

1997-98
524.0
116.7
640.7
81.8
1998-99
526.9
111.8
638.8
82.5
1999-2000
517.5
124.8
642.3
80.6
2000-01
487.2
102.6
589.8
82.6
2001-02
436.8
99.7
536.5
81.4
2002-03
390.6
112.5
503.0
77.7
2003-04
384.2
83.3
467.6
82.2
2004-05
383.7
91.5
475.2
80.7

Source: Livestock Products, Australia (7215.0).


The article 'The wool industry - looking back and forward' at the conclusion of the
Agriculture chapter of the Year Book Australia 2003 provides more information on the industry.

Previous PageNext Page


Bookmark and Share. Opens in a new window


Commonwealth of Australia 2014

Unless otherwise noted, content on this website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Australia Licence together with any terms, conditions and exclusions as set out in the website Copyright notice. For permission to do anything beyond the scope of this licence and copyright terms contact us.