Research over the last handful of years has shown that the number of participants in fly fishing has been growing at a steady pace. And from the introduction of diverse new businesses and products to the growth of more established brands to the increased engagement of our community in environmental- and trade-related issues, the industry is wholeheartedly answering that call. As if to put a punctuation mark on just how committed our industry is to even greater future success, the American Fly Fishing Trade Association (AFFTA) is pleased to announce that it has achieved a tremendous milestone, eclipsing the 1,000-member mark.
“The year I joined AFFTA as the president, we might’ve had 250 members and we used to have to beg to get people to run for the Board,” AFFTA president Ben Bulis said. “It has been the hard work and commitment of our Board and staff that has helped us reach this point. Day-in and day-out, year after year ensuring that our industry has a strong, unified voice on issues that are vital to our livelihoods. And it’s the dedication of our entire industry to the health of their business, our fisheries and welcoming more people to our sport that inspires us as an Association to do what we do. I could not be more proud of this community.”
AFFTA represents specialty retailers, manufacturers, reps, distributors, guides, lodges, outfitters, media professionals and more in the fly fishing industry across the country. The Association hosts the International Fly Tackle Dealer show (IFTD), the largest fly fishing industry trade show in the world, which is headed back to Denver, CO October 16-18, as well as the retail education-focused Dealer Summit. AFFTA also administers the Fisheries Fund, their granting arm that supports local- to national-level projects and organizations focused on fisheries conservation and education.
AFFTA guides the sustainable growth of the fly fishing industry through trade development and stewardship. We accomplish this by advocating for the industry and empowering our members to improve their businesses through collaboration, education and building community; along with advocating for healthy fisheries and engaging our members and partners to support protection, restoration, and access.