The annual China Fisheries & Seafood Expo (CFSE) is fast approaching, and we are excited to once again be attending this dynamic event. From November 2-4, the world’s most influential seafood players will descend on the great city of Qingdao to mingle, show off, place some orders and sign some deals.
The CFSE is the key event for seafood suppliers and importers, and, given China’s role in the world today, one that businesses don’t want to miss. China is the fastest growing seafood market on the planet. It wasn’t long ago that the Chinese appetite for seafood was mostly limited to coastal regions. In recent years, however, the hunger for seafood has quickly been spreading from the coast inland.
The numbers speak for themselves. In just the past five years, the reported value of China’s seafood imports has almost doubled to more than $9 billion USD. Chinese seafood consumption has been growing at 10 percent year over year, and there are no signs that it is going to slow down.
Yang Hong, general manager of Sea Fare (China) Ltd., one of the groups putting on the event, explains. “As China becomes more of a consumption and consumer-driven economy, this demand for seafood will grow even faster because Chinese people really love seafood for a variety of reasons and they’re willing to pay a premium for imported seafood. They think it’s safer and the quality is better.”
This is 21st year of the CFSE and it is a record breaking one. The event will take place for the second time at the state of the art Qingdao International Expo Centre. The convention centre is expanding the available exhibit space by 16 percent to 30,000 square meters in order to house the ever-growing number of exhibitors.
The new, ultra modern facility is actually the perfect location for the gathering. The beautiful, open concept design has plenty of room to house the 1,400 companies from more than 40 countries, and to accommodate the 25,000 visitors that will be strolling the aisles. Plus, the convention centre sits near the water on Aoshan Bay in case anyone needs a reminder of what they’re working toward.
The interest and participation in the CFSE reflects the opportunities in China. With so many businesses gathering here, it’s now hot on the heels of Brussels Seafood Show in terms of size and importance. If trends continue, the CFSE could soon overtake as the world’s largest seafood convention.
Gfresh will be exhibiting at the Canadian Pavilion, one of 22 national pavilions at the show. We are in excellent company there and are proud to exhibit near some of Canada’s best and most successful seafood exporters. And with Canada’s glowing reputation on the world stage these days, it means we can expect a lot of foot traffic.
We are also taking our business a step further this year by putting on a conference called FreshCon. The theme: Tomorrow happens here.
On November 3rd, Gfresh will be hosting an exclusive conference to discuss emerging disruptions in the world of seafood. Leading experts in seafood export, logistics, food safety and ecommerce will present keynotes on their predictions for the future; before finishing with a special announcement by Gfresh, Legend Capital and Riverhill.
Freshcon will be taking place south of the registration office in conference room M01 from 13.00-15:00. Registration is from 12:00 - 13:00.
To get to the conference, the CFSE provides shuttles that will run from downtown Qingdao; the convention centre is about 45 minute trip north of the city centre.
The exact location of the Qingdao International Expo Center is at the crossing of Binhai Road and Wenquan Two Road, Wenquan Town, Jimo City, Qingdao City.
If you’d like to cut down on travel time, the convention centre is surrounded by four and five star hotels, as well as western and Chinese dining options. In fact, the nouveau riche area of Aoshan Bay along the Yellow Sea coast has undergone massive upgrades over the last several years. The recent injection of cash and interest has created a community called Water City and is designed to attract tourism and resort activities like golfing. It’s not a bad place to be.
If you have the chance to get out and enjoy some of the sights in this world class city, you won’t regret it. Qingdao is located in the eastern Shandong Province and is a city like no other in China.
Part of Qingdao’s uniqueness is due to the remaining imprints of German influence that still exist from when Germany seized the strategic coastal town in 1898. The Germans only held it for 16 years, but they quickly made big changes to the then small town. Their fingerprints can still be seen in some lasting architecture and in the layout of the now booming city.
Qingdao has been named China’s most livable city and has much to offer. Beautiful golden sand beaches, clean air, and the world's longest sea bridge measuring an incredible 26.7 km. And no trip to Qingdoa would be complete without a visit to the world famous Tsingtao Brewery. The brewery which was actually once a German startup from 1904, but one they had to leave behind when the Japanese took over in 1914. (China gained and lost control of Qingdao again before Chairman Mao Zedong and his troops rolled in in 1949 to reclaim it for good.)
November is the perfect time to visit the region. In fact, it’s at the tail end of what the Chinese deem the Golden Season that is defined by dry, sunny days and temperatures ranging from 16-20C.
While it’s not exactly suntanning weather, it’s perfect for strolling the seaside and enjoying this fascinating place with it’s mix of old and new.
We hope to see you there!