January 21, 2021
Deadline for Offers:
March 17, 2021
Consultant in Drying and Postharvest Handling Practices
The USAID Agriculture Program
Contract No. 72011418C00001
Point of Contact
Ms. Isabel Getz
1828 L St NW, Suite 710, Washington, DC 20036
Section 1: Introduction, Technical Background and Scope of Work
1.1 Introduction: The USAID Agriculture Program is a USAID-funded program implemented by CNFA in Georgia. The USAID Agriculture Program is a five-year activity that aims to accelerate growth of agricultural sub-sectors that demonstrate strong potential to create jobs and increase micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) revenues. The USAID Agriculture Program provides competitive matching grants and technical assistance (TA) to address identified gaps in horticultural value chains (VCs), namely berries, stone fruits, pome fruits (apples), culinary herbs, perishable vegetables, table grapes and mandarins, that will result in the improved productivity and productive capacity of MSMEs, strengthened value chain linkages, increased access to markets, and improved capacity of MSMEs, cooperatives, associations and service/information/extension providers.
Offerors are responsible for ensuring that their offers are received by CNFA in accordance with the instructions, terms, and conditions described in this RFP. Failure to adhere with instructions described in this RFP may lead to disqualification of an offer from consideration.
CNFA will consider proposals in response to this RFP from both Independent Consultants and Firms.
1.2: Scope of Work: One of the priority VCs with high export potential is the almond and walnut VC. Almonds and walnuts are relatively new commodities for Georgia from the industrial production perspective. The total area of new orchards has been steadily growing in the last 5 years and reached up to 5,000 ha for walnut orchards and 3,000 ha for almond orchards in 2020. In terms of postharvest handling facilities, there is one operational walnut processor in Kakheti as well as four almond and walnut processing facilities under construction. Considering the dynamics of the sector, demand for such facilities is anticipated to increase from the 2021 harvest season.
The main challenges faced by primary producers and processors operating this VC include lack of modern, virus-free, resistant and productive planting and seeding materials, limited application of the best agricultural practices in the primary and processing industries, and lack of knowledge of modern postharvest handling, processing and storage technologies. The USAID Agriculture Program is assisting almond and walnut VC players to address these challenges through different mechanisms including in-kind grants to individual companies, strengthening organizational and technical capacity of sectoral association, and sharing international expertise and best practices.
The purpose of this assignment is to engage an international consultant in drying and postharvest handling practices to provide TA to the local almond and walnut processors to assist them in introducing the best practices into their operations that will lead to improved quality, increased sales, and higher incomes.
1.3: Anticipated Period of Performance: This assignment is planned to take place between 03/20/2021 and 10/20/2021. The assignment will be conducted through three visits (March, September, and October) after the conclusion of COVID-19 related international travel restrictions, and follow-up offsite work. The total LOE will not exceed 35 days.
1.4: Tasks: Under this scope of work, the Consultant shall work closely with the designated staff of the USAID Agriculture Program’s Technical Assistance Component to perform the following tasks:
· Situation assessment: Visit postharvest handling facilities to observe and review current harvest and postharvest handling methods and practices as well as limitations for improved almond/walnut post-harvest handling practices and storage;
· Recommend the most appropriate layouts for almond and walnut processing and develop basic guides in walnut/almond processing practices;
· Recommend reputable pre-cleaning/hulling/shelling/drying/storage/kernel grading and packaging machinery as well as manufacturers (countries/companies);
· Identify potential opportunities for the local almond and walnut VC and help to establish development priorities for almond/walnut processors in terms of export and value-added products;
· Provide online and onsite training sessions to at least 10 beneficiaries including members of the Almond and Walnut Producers Association;
· Offer follow-up online and onsite tailored consultancies to the Program’s grant recipients and beneficiaries operating and constructing postharvest handling facilities.
1.5: Deliverables: Deliverables for this consultancy should include:
· Overview of almond and walnut postharvest handing sector including recommendations for improvement;
· Layouts of almond/walnut postharvest handling facility and a list of necessary equipment;
· Guidelines for harvesting and postharvest handling of almonds and walnuts;
· Training handouts for almond and walnut processors;
· Written recommendations to six targeted beneficiaries operating and/or constructing almond and walnut processing facilities;
· Trip report summarizing conducted activities.