Italian kiwifruit packhouses' experience in dealing with COVID-19 has helped New Zealand to fast-track innovation in its own packhouses to deal with stringent new safety regulations.
The theme of the conference is 'Innovate from seed to plate' and will look at issues all the sectors have in common from research and development in robotics and technology to food safety and delivery of high end product to the consumer.
HortNZ chairman Julian Raine told Rural News horticulture is in a buoyant mood and will continue to boom.
"The horticulture industries collectively are on a high. It hasn't happened by chance. There has been a lot of work done to ensure we are in the space we are at the moment."
HortNZ chief executive Mike Chapman says innovation has been a key to success, on and off the orchards and gardens. Researchers such as Plant and Food had developed varieties that gave them the edge on the world stage.
The conference would have a key focus on technologies, especially drones.