A serious limitation in the application of plastid biotechnology is the low-level expression of transgene in non-green plastids like chromoplasts compared with photosynthetically active chloroplasts. Unlike other fruits, not all chloroplasts are transformed into chromoplast during ripening of red-fleshed kiwifruit ( Actinidia chinensis vs Hongyang) fruits, which may make kiwifruit as an ideal horticultural plant for oral vaccine production by plastid engineering. To identify cis -elements potentially triggering high-level transgene expression in edible tissues of the ‘Hongyang’ kiwifruit, here we report a comprehensive analysis of kiwifruit plastid gene transcription in the green leaves and fruits at three different developing stages. While transcripts of a few photosynthesis-related genes and most genetic system genes were substantially upregulated in green fruits compared with leaves, nearly all plastid genes were significantly downregulated at the RNA level during fruit development. Expression of a few genes remained unchanged, including psbA , the gene encoding the D1 polypeptide of photosystem II. However, PsbA protein accumulation decreased continuously during chloroplast-to-chromoplast differentiation. Analysis of post-transcriptional steps in mRNA maturation, including intron splicing and RNA editing, revealed that splicing and editing may contribute to regulating plastid gene expression. Altogether, 40 RNA editing sites were verified, and five of them were newly discovered. Taken together, this study has generated a valuable resource for the analysis of plastid gene expression, and provides cis -elements for future efforts to engineer the plastid genome of kiwifruit.