FoodTrade East & Southern Africa - Market Linkages Specialist

DAI  (International Trade and Developmen) Europe was contracted in 2013 by DFID to implement the 5 year Food Trade East and Southern Africa (FoodTrade ESA). FoodTrade ESA is a five-year programme aimed at improving national and regional market efficiency in the trade of staple foods.

FoodTrade ESA is headquartered in Nairobi, and covers 9 countries: Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda (East Africa) and Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe (Southern Africa). FoodTrade ESA recognises the transformative potential of agriculture and trade to improve the lives and incomes of thousands of small scale farmers, as well as strengthen food security across the region. To harness this potential and bridge the gaps that exist in the trade of staple foods, FoodTrade ESA is investing in innovative systems to allow small-scale farmers to improve their inputs and gain access regional markets. We support the private sector, governments, and other development actors to bring small scale farmers closer to the heart of agricultural systems. In addition to this, we recognise and address the specific challenges that prevent both men and women from equally participating in, and benefiting from, regional agricultural value chains.

FoodTrade ESA is designed to systemically improve the functioning of national and regional staple food market systems impacting directly on over 400,000 households and consumers. The programme delivers this through an effective Project Management Unit (PMU) and fosters catalytic and innovative solutions using two facilitative tools: a Challenge and Development Funds. The programme works to unlock systemic market failures that lead to the deepening and improved functioning of food markets and therefore increase staple foods trade across the region. Since inception, FTESA has focused and concentrated heavily on the Eastern Africa market systems primarily within the borders of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda with some market systems activities in Zambia and policy interventions in the broader Southern African region. The three main pillars of FoodTrade ESA work are:

1. Improved Post-Harvest Markets
2. Improved Input Markets
3. Improved Trade Environment and Reduced Uncertainty

The project is now entering its fifth and final year of implementation and is now focusing on consolidating its key achievements and successes, creating synergies and leverage on partners’ relationships to build on the envisaged lasting systemic transformation across the Eastern and Southern Africa region on the programme activities in improving market performance.

Market Linkages Specialist 
Reference: FTESAMARKETS-14062017

Reports to: Markets Systems Expert and Team Leader
Duty Station: Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

Timeframe: July 1st, 2017 - April 17th, 2018

The Market Linkages Specialist will work closely with partners and stakeholders in the implementation of market system related activities in order to enhance dialogue and linkages between producers and buyers in the staple foods value chains. S/he will liaise with the technical team members, partners and stakeholders including government officials at national and local levels. The Specialist will scope and capitalize on available and potential market opportunities, taking the lead in working with our existing grantees to coach and mentor producer organisations and buyers to sustaining producer – buyer relationship.

Working closely with other technical team members, partners and stakeholders, the Market Linkages Specialist will purposely ensure that gender and youth is mainstreamed among beneficiaries, and along the value chains we are active in. S/he will support the M&E team in collecting and consolidating data and relevant information related to the project. The Market Linkages Specialist will assist the Trade Policy, Monitoring and Results Measurement, and Knowledge and Communications Teams. This is a full time position, aimed at strengthening FoodTrade ESA engagement with staple markets systems across the ESA region.

Primary Responsibilities
This position will contribute towards designing interventions and consolidating achievements and successes that address staple foods market constraints. Broadly, roles include:
Planning and participating in project work-plan meetings with partners especially East Africa Grain Council (EAGC), Farm Africa, UN WFP Food to Markets Alliance platform, among others
Ensuring partners are providing quality project reporting on time, and are receiving feedback on project implementation.
Grain Management – be the custodian that partners are implementing the EAC staple foods grades and standards in ensuring proper grain storage and condition, assuring quality specification grain is used, practicing good post-harvest practices such as drying to required moisture to maintain the highest quality possible.
Overseeing Quality of Grain Handling: collect feedback from potential buyers on the grain handling from FoodTrade supported projects involving coordinating purchases/transactions, receiving, sampling, grading, and shipping; and maintaining grain quality and quantity. (In due time get the contacts of buyers and sellers in B2B reports and follow up)
Proactively meet with key informants from industry and relevant public sector entities and representative of producers, processors, retailers, exporters and other stakeholders.
Main tasks and responsibilities include:
The Market Linkages Specialist will complete the following tasks in the day to day functions of this position. This list is not exhaustive, and the Markets Systems Expert and/or the Team Leader may define additional task within the scope of the overall programme objectives:
Coordinate purchases by reporting all grain purchases when made by FoodTrade partners in volumes by staple
Coordinate periodic reports to FoodTrade ESA from partners as per contractual agreements; ensuring quality
Tracking all the EAGC certified warehouses and updating the information to the FoodTrade ESA aggregating partnerships especially Farm Africa, WFP FtMA and Kilimo Trust.
Ensuring training on proper post-harvest handling, grain quality standards, and Warehouse Systems process.
Prepare field activity reports on a weekly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual and annual basis
Coordinating partners to mobilize farmers to deliver the set volume targets for maize, paddy rice and pulses to EAGC certified warehouses
Maintain an up to date record of all farmers, farmer groups, aggregation centers, warehouses and stakeholders
Sensitizing and creating awareness of the G-soko trading platform to stakeholders
Regular collection of data on grains sales/volumes etc.to analyse markets and market opportunities, be knowledgeable about existing and potential market conditions.
Develop linkages with service providers such as insurance companies, Banks, and transport and logistical companies and provide oversight during service delivery on behalf of members.
Attend market linkage forums with that aim at marketing the aggregated commodity
Any other tasks and duties assigned from time to time.
Required Qualifications, Skills and Experience
Bachelor’s degree preferably in agricultural economics, agribusiness or equivalent with 5 years’ of
Experience in working with and capacity building of smallholder, medium and progressive rural farmers;
Experience in social research/survey work in a development organization;
Fluent in spoken and written English and Kiswahili languages;
Good time management skills and willingness to work occasional long hours and travel to the field frequently;
Ability to work in a team as a good communicator and learner;
A problem solver, team player and independent thinker.
Capacity to manage several tasks simultaneously. Be flexible and willing to assume a range of unanticipated assignments.
Excellent computer skills in Microsoft office suite.
Essential Competencies/Behaviours:
Adaptability: Able to adjust to changes in work conditions, assignments, and work schedules;
Communication: Able to communicate well with others.
Critical Thinking: Obtains information, identifies key issues and relationships, and breaks down problems into simple tasks or activities;
Integrity/Trust: Demonstrates honesty, is widely trusted, keeps commitments, treats people with dignity and respect, admits mistakes; does not misrepresent him/herself for personal gain;
Interpersonal Effectiveness/Teamwork: Ability to develop positive working relationships and work effectively with others.
Initiative/Results Oriented: Takes action to achieve goals beyond what is required is pro-active, is a self-starter;
Technical/Professional Knowledge: Performs complex tasks in area of expertise.

Candidates who meet these requirements are required to send their CV and cover letter by email, quoting the position and relevant reference number in the subject line to foodtrade_recruitment@dai.com .

Applications should include three work-related referees who are supervisors and day-time telephone numbers. The application deadline is 30th June 2017 . Only candidates who meet qualifications will be shortlisted and contacted. Only Tanzanian nationals or persons with Tanzanian work permits will be considered.

We are committed to minimizing the environmental impacts of operations related to the programme, and to ensuring our work supports social protection for everyone without bias. We encourage gender equity and diversity in our programme. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, colour, religion, sex, or national origin. We are an equal opportunity employer.

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