SCOPE OF WORK
Post-harvest assessment and training
Prime Contract: Uzbekistan Agricultural Value Chains (AVC) Activity
Prime Contract No: AID-176-C-15-00001
Proposed Individual: TBD
Position/Title: Grape Post-Harvest Specialist (STTA)
Level of Effort (LOE): 24 days, including travel days
Period of Performance: On/a September 2019
Location: Tashkent, Uzbekistan
The Uzbekistan Agricultural Value Chains (AVC) Activity is a five-year $17 million program that supports expanded diverse and competitive trade and markets by enabling a more diverse and competitive private sector and enhancing agricultural competitiveness and food security. The project’s organizational chart mirrors the links found along the value chain: Production, Post-Harvest, Market Linkages, and Education. Component 2 of the Activity is focused on improving post-harvest practices in Uzbekistan, including processing and storing. Table grapes are among the project’s targeted crops as they play a significant role in Uzbekistan’s edible horticulture sector. For more information on current grape post-harvest practices in Uzbekistan, please see the country context annex to this posting.
Over the last 4 years, AVC, with the help of GCCA, has helped improve post-harvest practices across all of its value chains and beneficiaries. However, in spite of gradual improvements and the introduction of new techniques and practices on grape post-harvest industry in Uzbekistan, there are still demonstrable issues during the grape storage period that need to be addressed. The known issues are sulfur injury of grape berries, condensation, development of botrytis, stem drying, and berry detachment. A lack of knowledge identifying optimal grape ripening stage for prolonged storage is also an issue. In addition to this, agro-technical measures like irrigation, fertigation, disease control, and local agro-climatic conditions also impact the shelf life and quality of grapes during the storage.
The objective of this assignment is to contract a Grape Post-Harvest Specialist who will visit several types of grape production fields, packing facilities and refrigerated warehouses to observe and assess the different grape handling practices throughout Uzbekistan. The Specialist will speak to the individual farmers, cold store owners, exporters and wholesalers in an effort to uncover flaws and provide guidance on better practices of grape post-harvest techniques. The Specialist will visit the following provinces: Fergana, Andijan, Namangan, Tashkent, Samarkand and Bukhara. In addition to this, the Specialist will carry out three training programs (Fergana, Tashkent and Bukhara) that address grape post-harvest physiology, global best practices, latest trends, improved packaging, and methods to prolong the shelf life of table grapes.
1. Perform a formal assessment and technical evaluation of current grape post-harvest practices in Uzbekistan including but not limited to:
- Identify the most advanced and least advanced grape post-harvest practices;
- Identify the main causes of spoilage and temperature abuse during grape storage;
- Identify the main issues during production, harvest, sorting, pre-cooling, packaging and application of sulfur pads, storage temperature;
2. Based on the above-identified issues, provide technical consultations on sorting and grading of fresh grapes for direct sale and prolonged storage;
3. Provide technical consultation and information to individual cold store owners including specific recommended improvements and new methods of post-harvest handling suitable to that particular facility;
4.Conduct (3) half-day training programs for groups of farmers and cold storage owners on best grape post-harvest practices in three provinces – Tashkent, Fergana, and Bukhara – with a focus on grape physiology, grape varieties, pre-cooling techniques, and the application of sulfur dioxide pads. These trainings should also include and address localized issues specific to Uzbekistan, lessons learned, and relevant global practices.
5. Provide (2) short, student lectures at Tashkent State Agrarian University (TSAU), Post-harvest and Processing Department on best grape post-harvest practices and techniques. These lectures will be held at TSAU Tashkent and TSAU Andijan.
Timeline and Estimated Level of Effort
- Perform a formal assessment and technical evaluation via field research of current grape post-harvest practices in Uzbekistan – 13 days
- Technical Consultations: sorting, grading, storing – 2 days
- Conduct (3) half-day training programs for groups of farmers and cold storage owners on best grape post-harvest practices in Tashkent, Fergana, and Bukhara. – 1.5 days
- Provide (2) short, student lectures at Tashkent State Agrarian University (TSAU) - .5 day
- Compile and document findings via a formal report (remote) - 4 days
- International Travel Days – 3 days
- Total Estimated LOE = 24 days
The Specialist may be responsible for producing and submitting technical deliverables subject to approval. These deliverables may include but are not limited to the following:
- Conduct (3) half-day training programs for groups of farmers and cold storage owners on best grape post-harvest practices (deadline is no later than 14 calendar days after arrival in country)
- Provide (2) short, student lectures at Tashkent State Agrarian University (TSAU) (deadline is no later than 14 calendar days after arrival in country)
- Draft Assessment Report (deadline is within 7 calendar days of departure from Uzbekistan)
- Final Assessment Report (deadline is within 3 calendar days of receiving comments from Chief of Party)
The Specialist will report to the AVC Chief of Party.
- At least 10 years of working experience in the fresh produce post-harvest sector: research institutes, extension services, universities, private sector, etc.
- Experience implementing similar training programs and consultancies.
- Fluency in English.
- Experience writing technical publications related to fresh produce post-harvest practices preferred.
- Graduate or Doctoral degree on Fruit Physiology and Plant Pathology or similar field preferred.
- Experience working with USAID preferred.