In 1996 the FFF-Europe Flycasting Instructor Certification programme (FFF-Europe FCICP) was founded in partnership with the FFF headquarter in the USA. The affiliation agreement declared that no exams according to the lower American standards could be held in Europe and vice versa. The European instructor certification programme should be able to act independently in every regard. Only a symbolic Dollar per member had to be paid to the FFF in order to use their trademarks. However, it was not possible for a common fly fisher to join FFF-Europe, because by the will of the American FFF only the in European instructor certification programme (FFF-Europe FCICP) should be affiliated with them. The FFF-Europe FCICP developed well during the following years. Meanwhile instructors from 12 European states had passed the probably world-wide most demanding fly casting instructor exam.
In 2006, the FFF attempted to force their affiliated European partner, FFF-Europe - which was until then independent - to exclusively apply the American standards of flycasting instruction (which are not up to the same standards as the instruction offered in Europe) in their instructors' tests, and to submit all revenue from examinations and membership fees to the American FFF, stating that any failure to comply with these requests would invariably lead to expulsion and subsequent denial of rights to any future use of the name, the logo, or make any reference whatsoever to the FFF. Since the former FFF-Europe members felt that they neither need nor want supervision from across the Atlantic, and that European funds should remain in Europe , they decided to form a new, independent, and strictly European organization - the EFFA.
So in 2006 the European Fly Fishing Association (EFFA) with headquarter in Switzerland was founded in order to continue the successful and independent work of the former FFF-Europe. At the same time EFFA was enabled to open doors to all fly fishers and to become active in all other important areas of fly fishing as well as conservation, too. The interests of fly fishers should thereby be represented and promoted at a wide and international level.
In 2010 the double hand flycasting instructor certification programme was finished in addition to the already proven single hand flycasting instructor certification programmes. The first double hand instructors were certified in the same year in St. Petersburg (RUS). In 2011 the guide programme was brought to life in cooperation with the Hedmark University College in Elverum (NOR). The guides who graduate do not "only" receive an EFFA guide certificate but also a dipolma of Hedmark University.
For the first time an international fly fishing organisation could offer certification programmes in all relevant areas.
In the field of fly tying the organisation became active, too. In 2012 the EFFA Open an international fly tying competition was brought to life. The competition is open to fly tiers all around the globe and every year the best fly tiers in different categories are awarded.