The China Fisheries & Seafood Expo was established in 1996 through a partnership between the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade Unit (CCPIT-SSA) and Sea Fare Expositions, Inc. The CCPIT-SSA is a division within China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, while Sea Fare Expositions is a privately held company based in Seattle, Washington that has been organizing trade expositions for the seafood industry since 1984. Sea Fare Expositions was responsible for recruiting exhibitors and visitors from outside China as the Overseas Organizer.
The first CFSE was held in 1996 in Qingdao, and since then, it has been held in Beijing, Dalian, Shanghai, and Guangzhou. In 2005, Sea Fare Expositions established a wholly-owned foreign subsidiary in Beijing, Sea Fare (China) Ltd., to increase visitor and exhibitor participation among both Chinese and overseas companies with offices in China. The expo moved permanently to Qingdao in 2014.