About the industry
Deer were introduced during the 19th century. Six species form the basis of the Australian deer industry. Deer farms in Australia are often integrated as agritourism enterprises.
In addition to venison (meat), other deer products include velvet antler, skins and co-products such as tails, blood etc used in traditional Eastern medicine. Approximately 85% of venison and more than 95% of velvet antler is exported.
Following a period of drought, in 2010-11 deer numbers on Australian farms dropped to 45,000 on 1,436 farms and the gross value of the industry was around $1.7 million.
The statutory levy on deer velvet has ceased. There is a small residual fund available for a strategic project.
The Levy is collected and distributed via the Department of Agriculture. For more information, visit the Department of Agriculture Water and the Environment website.
View the AgriFutures Deer Program income and expenditure for 2018-19 statement.
The Deer Program RD&E objectives for 2013-2018 are covered by the objectives of the Animal Industries RD&E Plan:
- Provide new and developing animal industries with regular and up-to-date market assessments
- Enhance industry success through targeted industry-specific RD&E strategies
- Facilitate new industry growth through multi-disciplinary approaches that potentially advantage several industries
- Improve capacity across new and developing animal industries.