Led by AUSVEG Communications Officer, Erin Lyall, the growers spent their first night in New Zealand in Auckland. Five days of grower and merchant visits around the North Island followed, with highlights including visits to: Wilcox in Pukekohe, which specialises in mass production, marketing and packaging of potatoes; LeaderBrand in Gisborne, which currently crops 3,000 hectares across Gisborne and Canterbury; and growers of exotic cultivars such as yams and earth gems, Halfords in Feilding. Participants also visited a number of farmers’ and local produce markets where they had the opportunity to speak with growers retailing their own produce. Returning to Auckland on Day Six, the young growers attended the annual Horticulture New Zealand Conference from 3-5 August. Keynote speakers included: The Hon. David Carter, Minister for Agriculture & Minister for Biosecurity; Lain Jager, Chief Executive, ZESPRI International; John Allen, Chief Executive and Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade; Marc Soccio, Senior Analyst Food, Wine & Horticulture Rabobank Food & Agribusiness Research and Advisory; Theresa Gattung, Chair of Wool Partners International; and, Anne-Marie Huxley, Chief Executive of MOSS. The group was also fortunate enough to meet Horticulture New Zealand’s President Andrew Fenton and Chief Executive Peter Silcock. Following attendance at the Horticulture New Zealand Annual General Meeting (AGM) on the final day of the tour, an impromptu visit to a local green grocer on the way to the airport allowed the group the chance to inspect a small-scale retailer and sample some of the produce. Overall, the tour was a resounding success, though participants would have liked to have seen more produce in harvest.