Seafood Expo Asia returns for 10th edition and first in-person show since 2018
Seafood Expo Asia (SEA), a seafood industry event drawing companies from 42 countries, kicked off the first day of the three-day expo in Singapore on 14 September, 2022.
The event, held in the Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre, runs from 14 to 16 September and is the 10th edition of SEA. It also represents the first in-person SEA event that Diversified Communications – which also owns and operates Seafood Expo North America in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A. and Seafood Expo Global in Barcelona, Spain – has held since 2018. (Editor’s note: Diversified Communications owns and operates SeafoodSource).
“Seafood Expo Asia serves as a critical platform where buyers and decision makers in the seafood industry come to source the latest products from around the world,” Diversified Communications Event Director Iris Kwan said in a release. “In addition to finding products, attendees can participate in live conference sessions led by industry experts on topics pertinent to today’s seafood business environment.”
In addition to being the first in-person event, it is also the first event the company has hosted in Singapore after announcing the move in 2020. The previous edition of the event was hosted in Hong Kong, but the 2019 edition of the event was canceled in response to social unrest.
After the cancelation in 2019, the 2020 event was to be held in Singapore EXPO in November 2020, but Diversified Communications decided to cancel the event in August 2020, citing the ongoing health and safety issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The company made the decision to move to Singapore in response to independent research, Diversified Communications Group Vice President Liz Plizga said at the time.
“Findings from third-party independent research revealed that, driven by growing consumption and imports, Southeast Asia has a growing need to meet with international seafood suppliers. Seafood Expo Asia is well-positioned to serve a wider Asian audience and create opportunity for the seafood community throughout Asia and the world,” she said. “The relocation will better position Seafood Expo Asia as a hub event to facilitate both Southeast and East Asia buyers in strong growing markets with easy accessibility.”
In between the last event in 2018 and the recently-commenced event in 2022, SEA offered a digital solution called Seafood Expo Asia Reconnect. The online event ran in 2020 and in November 2021 to connect “international seafood suppliers with Asian buyers looking to achieve their business goals,” Diversified said.
This year's show will feature a slate of new companies exhibiting at the event for the first time ever. According to Diversified Communications Bangladesh, Italy, Latvia, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom and Yemen all have a presence at the show for the first time.
In sum, the event features 18 national and regional pavilions, with new pavilions from Argentina, Canada, Ecuador, Papua New Guinea, India, Japan, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Latvia, and Turkey.
Alongside the exhibition are multiple seafood-oriented events, including a conference program covering a number of topics relevant to the Asian market, Diversified Communications said.
The exhibition also features a product showcase, highlighting products from a number of companies, and a matchmaking program connecting high-volume seafood buyers to suppliers through a digital platform.
Attendees of the event, soon after it opened, were quick to welcome it back.
“It’s great to be back in front of real people again,” Paul Stephenson of New Zealand-based United Fisheries, said. “When you miss these shows, after three years, you’re going ‘I need to get on a plane and see people.’”
Some companies attending for the first time, like Samoa-based Apia Export Fish Packers, are attending for the first time in order to access new markets.
“That’s what we’re here for, to see where we can head in the future,” Steve Cleverly, co-owner of the Apia Export Fish Packers, told SeafoodSource. “It’s to put Samoa on the map, to put our country on the map.”
Photo by Chris Chase/SeafoodSource