Melbourne Hort Market Immersion

Melbourne, Australia | 29 May - 3 June 2024

Our market immersions have allowed more than 50 people just like you to explore and understand the United Kingdom, Ireland, USA and Australia as potential markets for their products and services.

While everyone's experience is unique, these trips generate real benefits for the businesses that attend. Companies in the past have seen participants:

  • sign commercial deals

  • decide and accelerate entry into new markets

  • meet critical in-market partners, investors and support services, and

  • forge stronger connections within the NZ agri-community

"It would be impossible to individually create a programme of visits and access to people and places that we received on the immersion programme".

– Western Australia Market Immersion Attendee

Find out more about our delegation that is joining us our Melbourne Hort Market Immersion below.

The dates to align with Australia and New Zealand's largest horticulture conference and trade show - Hort Connections 2024 - in Melbourne this June.

This is likely to be the last market immersion we run 2024, so if you want to answer the question 'Is the Australian market right for you?' This trip might be your last chance.

Join our Lets Connect Networking session

Sunday 2nd June at The Boatbuilders Yard | The Decks from 3 - 7pm

 23 S Wharf Promenade, South Wharf VIC 3006, Australia

Why join this Market Immersion?

If your business serves the horticulture sector and you are serious about starting or expanding your business into Australia in the next two years, you can't afford to miss this trip.

“(We made) too many connections to list but that was the most valuable part of the trip for me”.

– Western Australia Market Immersion Attendee

How much does it cost?

  • Early Bird ticket: Is now Closed

  • Regular Bird ticket: $1,200 + GST per person - Is now Closed

Estimated costs:

We expect the costs associated with this Market Immersion to be around (3.5k - includes market immersion ticket price) full budget can be found here.

NOTE: Estimated budget does not include: costs for Hort Connections and AusAgritech Events. Costs may differ depending on when you make your booking.

Is there Co-funding available?

Co-funding is available for eligible agritech companies.

The first eligibility criteria is that you have purchased a ticket, securing your spot on the Melbourne Hort Market Immersion.

“A perfect way to gain valuable market research in an area that we have had no commercial relationship with”.

– Western Australia Market Immersion Attendee

What costs are covered by the Melbourne Hort Market Immersion ticket?

The ticket price includes:

  • Accommodation on Wednesday 29 and Thursday 30 May

  • Meals - Wednesday dinner through to Friday lunch (but not beverages)

  • Transport, meals and access to meeting and immersion activities on Monday 3 June

  • Group transportation for site visits

  • Snacks & refreshments

  • Access to sites visited as part of The Melbourne Hort Market Immersion

  • Entry to the Melbourne Hort Let’s Connect Networking Event at 3pm Sunday 2 June

What costs are not covered?

The ticket price does not include:

  • Hort Connections 2024 tickets

  • Flights & Travel Insurance

  • All other meals, and all beverages

  • Accommodation in Melbourne from Friday night

  • Weekend activities

Is there an itinerary?

"Visit(ing) a wide range of end users provides great learnings and insights of key problems across a variety of industries".

– Western Australia Market Immersion Attendee

This is the proposed agenda - it is subject to change based on availability and timing.

Day 1: Wednesday 29 May

  • Melbourne Hort Market Immersion 🎟️ - Welcome Dinner

  • Make your own way to the Mantra Melbourne Epping Hotel | 250 Cooper Street, Epping. Check in from 3pm 🎟️

  • Meet at reception to walk to dinner at 5.25pm

  • Welcome Dinner with Agriculture Victoria at 5.30pm 🎟️

Day 2: Thursday 30 May

Melbourne Hort Market Immersion 🎟️ - Travelling from Melbourne to Shepparton

  • Melbourne Market - is Victoria’s wholesale fruit, vegetable and cut flower trading centre, one of six central fresh produce markets in Australia. Operating from a purpose-built facility on a 67-hectare site at Epping, the Market provides the critical link between growers, wholesalers, retailers and the fresh produce supply chain. Approximately, 2,750 businesses use the Market as a base, buying and selling fresh produce in the early hours of the morning for distribution across Victoria and Australia.

  • Tahbilk Estate - Tahbilk is the oldest family owned winery and vineyard in Victoria. The family has been at the forefront of sustainability, ensuring Tahbilk’s rich heritage, winemaking style and unique natural environment. Situated within the traditional lands of the Taungurung people, tabilk-tabilk means place of many waterholes.

  • Australia Fruit Solutions - fresh fruit processing facility specialising in the production of fruit juices, purées, and are continually innovating to create exciting new ways to add value to the fruit from their local growers.

Day 3: Friday 31 May

Melbourne Hort Market Immersion 🎟️ - Travelling from Shepparton to Melbourne

  • Plunkett Orchards - Plunkett Orchards is a family business that has been growing fruit in Ardmona for 127 years. Plunkett Orchards produce exceptional quality fruit for local and export markets through sustainable crop management practices and the latest fruit grading technology. Plunkett Orchards supplies premium quality fresh apples, pears and stonefruits to retailers around the world. Fruit grading, packing and cool storage facilities on-site at Plunkett Orchards enables the control of fruit quality from tree to market.

  • Tatura SmartFarm - is in the Goulburn Valley and is Australia’s leading horticulture SmartFarm research facility effectively linked to the Mildura SmartFarm, enabling research and innovation to deliver high-quality fruit from orchard to export market. They develop, use and demonstrate new applications of agricultural technology to achieve increases in marketable yield, product value and production efficiency in pears, apples, stone fruit and almonds.

  • Gaia Project Australia - Gaia is a start-up agtech company that is dedicated to creating sustainable food production solutions that have no negative impact on the planet while addressing the growing demand for food to feed our increasing population. Their focus is on developing advanced crop cultivation solutions that are safe, efficient, and sustainable, using a combination of new and existing technologies.

  • Arrive at Melbourne Hotel 💵

Day 4: Saturday 1 June

Day 5: Sunday 2 June

Day 6: Monday 3 June

Melbourne Hort Market Immersion 🎟️ - Travelling to Werribee and back

  • Fresh Select and Nutri V - Fresh Select leads the way in industry innovation using sustainable farming techniques and responsible practices to ensure top quality produce to the highest food safety standard. Fresh Select is one of the largest lettuce and brassica farmers in Australia. Nutri V takes 100% Australian grown vegetables and turns them into nutrient dense, fibre-rich and protein fuelled vegetable powders.

  • CSIRO Food Innovation Centre - makes it easy for food, ingredient and equipment manufacturing companies to access their extensive expertise, technologies and support in innovation. From adopting innovative technologies and improving process efficiency to creating high value products for new markets.

  • 3pm - Hort Connections 2024 Welcome Event 🌿

Day 7: Tuesday 4 June

  • Hort Connections 2024 Welcome Breakfast 🌿

  • Hort Connections 2024 Trade Show & Conference🌿

Day 8: Wednesday 5 June

  • Hort Innovation Investor Breakfast - Melbourne Convention Centre in room Clarendon A & B at 7am. You should have received an invite please RSVP.

  • Hort Connections 2024 Trade Show & Conference🌿

  • Hort Connections 2024 Gala Dinner 🌿

Day 9: Thursday 6 June

  • AusAgritech Investment Showcase Awards and Gala dinner 💵


  • Items with 🎟️ are included in the price of your Market Immersion ticket.

  • Items with 🌿 should be considered when buying your Hort Connections 2024 ticket.

  • Items with 💵 is to be funded by yourself.


We encourage you to get your flights booked now if you haven’t already.

When it comes to arrival, we recommend you fly in on Wednesday 29 February (check in available from 3pm, we will be leaving for dinner at 5.25pm so please be at reception by then).

As for departure, we finish the market immersion on Monday 3 June, so it depends on if you are attending Hort Connections and the AusAgritech events.

Travel Insurance

Please ensure you have adequate coverage.


Your ticket price includes accommodation for Wednesday 29 and Thursday 30 May nights, which we will book for you.

From Friday 31 May until departure our team will be staying at The Waterfront Melbourne Apartments. You're welcome to join us here or find your own accommodation, however please note the bus for Monday 3 June will depart and drop off at this location.

The Waterfront Melbourne Apartments: Promo code: HORTCAL & Link

For other accommodation options - visit the Hort Connections accommodation page.

Bus Transport and Distances

We'll be renting a bus to travel around as a group. We will have some long distances to cover but will try to ensure you have a comfortable trip. We will have complimentary snacks and drinks available for you at all times and have a toilet and wifi available for you to use.


Callaghan Innovation will be funding a number of agritech companies, researchers and growers to attend this market immersion. You will be expected to pay for everything up front and will invoice us once you return. Please note you must attend: the premarket briefing Thursday 9 May 1-3pm and all activities planned for the Market Immersion (Wednesday 29 May through till Monday 3 June) to receive co-funding.

This event is part of our effort to supercharge New Zealand’s agritech sector with Agritech Activator