Solidaridad Food Products Baseline Study in Kenya

Solidaridad Network

Solidaridad Eastern and Central Africa

TERMS OF REFERENCE: Baseline Study for Food Products Project under RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! Program in Solidaridad East and Central Africa


Solidaridad Network is an international solution-oriented civil society organization working through eight regional expertise centres to transform markets to make them more sustainable and inclusive.

Our eight regional expertise centres include Asia, Eastern and Central Africa, Europe, Latin America, North America, Southern Africa, South America, West Africa and our global Secretariat in the Netherlands.

Solidaridad Eastern and Central Africa, one of the regional centres, headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya with country offices and programmes in Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Uganda.

We bring together supply chain players and engage them with innovative solutions to improve production, ensuring the transition to a sustainable and inclusive economy that maximizes the benefit for all.

We facilitate strengthening of local capacity in developing countries, support the creation of enabling environments for economies to thrive, and improve market access.


RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! is a 5-year program (2021-2025) supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The program is implemented through a consortium and in brief it tries to invoke the actual meaning of sustainability both in theory and practice in global commodity supply chains.

Sustainability seems to have lost its true meaning. There is no such thing as sustainable products when the people who produce those goods live in poverty, when natural resources are not managed sustainably, and working conditions are poor.

Civic space in supply chains of our target countries remains confined. Space for farmers and workers to improve their position in the chain, to bargain for better prices, or working conditions, or to influence equitable access and use of natural resources, in the countries and sectors of our focus is limited.

Systemic, transformative change is therefore required by reclaiming the essence of sustainability through an enabled civic space that sets the right conditions for this to happen.

Given the above explanation, the strategic objective of the RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! Program is to contribute to inclusive sustainable value chains and trade in an innovative way, in which the interests, voices and rights of farmers, workers and citizens (both male and female) are represented and heard in decision making for sustainable use of natural resources, decent work, fair value distribution, and sustainable consumption.

The Program’s theory of change’s premise is that: IF we strengthen civil society; IF we increase and maintain civic space; and IF we apply a gender & social inclusion approach – throughout all our interventions in trade and value chains;- THEN this will influence the public and private sector to adopt and implement sustainability norms that will ultimately alleviate the poverty of farmers and workers.

The RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! Program works in 7 supply chains being; Palm Oil, Cocoa, Cotton & Textiles, Gold, Food Products, Coffee and Tea.

These commodity supply chains are sub-projects of the entire program.

We see a strong relevance of these sectors for the global living income/decent work agenda, and a strong linkage with the local Dutch embassy priorities.

The program seeks to strengthened interaction between:

  • A Vibrant and Strong Civil Society that engages and debates with public and private decision makers, monitors implementation and enforcement of policies and mechanisms, holds decision makers accountable, safeguards gender and social inclusion, and demands and consumes sustainable products;
  • A Responsible Private Sector implementing comprehensive policies and innovative inclusive business models for truly sustainable sourcing, production, trade and investment;
  • A Supportive Public Sector enforcing national, regional and international comprehensive norms and regulatory frameworks that ensure sustainable production, trade and consumption.


This consortium has come together in a broad coalition of local civil society partners under one unified banner in a proposed strategic partnership with the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to embark on an ambitious goal: to RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! We do this in service to our local constituencies: farmers, workers and their communities.

The RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! Consortium (RSC) is deeply rooted in local societies with a local identity, ownership and autonomy, and local staff under local leadership, acting in compliance with local legislation.

The consortium comprises of:

  • Fundación Solidaridad Latinoamericana, Solidaridad West Africa, Solidaridad Southern Africa, Solidaridad East & Central Africa, Solidaridad Asia, and Solidaridad Europe, are the ‘Solidaridad Network’; organised in a truly bottom-up model. Each organisation is independent and locally embedded without a headquarter performing an oversight role. Each organisation is considered by local communities, as well as public and private sector actors as credible, and reliable.
  • FairFood is a mission driven tech CSO, bringing strong knowledge and tools on digitalisation and fairdata, to be able to capitalise on the tremendous opportunity in smart technologies that will give farmers and workers a digital identity and will have the potential to raise income levels and improve working conditions.
  • Business Watch Indonesia (BWI) is one of the oldest NGOs in Indonesia and has garnered the reputation as a prominent sustainability NGO. Together with Solidaridad, BWI documented ‘Tea Vision’, aiming for sustainability in the tea sector, and is a Co-founder of the Lestari standard for tea. BWI is the lead CSO for the Solidaridad sustainable landscape management programme at Central Java and has been working with Solidaridad for 13 years.
  • TrustAfrica is a locally African registered CSO, operating on a continental scale, and will work together with the three Solidaridad African consortium partners directly to ensure a consolidated continental effort in raising the Voices of African farmers, workers and CSOs. Since 2006 TrustAfrica has funded 211 organizations in 30 countries.

2.0 The Food Products Project under RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! Program

2.1 Background

The horticulture sub-sector plays a crucial role in export earnings contributing significantly to the agricultural GDP. The horticultural industry is one of the most promising sub-sectors for increasing incomes in the rural and peri-urban areas, improving nutrition of people, diversification of exports, provision of raw materials for agro-based industries as well as creating jobs especially for youth and women.

The sector is also the main driver of the non-agricultural economy including manufacturing, providing inputs and markets for non-agricultural operations such as building/construction, transportation, tourism, education and other social services.

Horticulture holds great potential for increasing household income, nutrition and health status as well as increased earnings from export, yet this sector is largely under-developed in Africa.

A wide diversity of vegetables and fruits are found in Kenya and Uganda with both men and women and youth involved in producing, processing, marketing and utilization of different types of products.

Horticulture production and productivity in East Africa is largely constrained by factors related to poor management of production resources, weak and non inclusive policy framework, low adoption of new technologies and unfair value distribution.

The majority of horticulture growers and value chain actors, both, in Kenya and Uganda face many hardships; low incomes, degraded natural resources (land, air, water), and poverty. Uncertainties brought about by climate change makes the situation worse by exerting more pressure on the horticulture value chain.

Farmers have little say in the policies that determine the operations of their business and their future. The growers’ and civil society’s ability to claim and defend economic, social, ecological and political rights, and influence decision making affecting their rights is confined. These challenges are worse for female growers, youth and other marginalized groups as a result of sociocultural inhibitions.

To address these systemic challenges; the Food Products Project under Reclaim Sustainability Programme seeks to strengthen the interaction between a Responsible Private Sector able to Strengthen the position of farmers and consumers in the horticulture supply chain through inclusive innovative digital and fair business models.

A Supportive Public Sector that Influences agendas, policy and develop solutions to address issues in the horticulture value chain and trade in an inclusive way and A Vibrant and Strong Civil society which will Mobilize, activate and engage citizens & civil society organizations (CSOs) to change norms and influence policy agenda in the horticulture sector.

2.2 Project Expected Outcomes

  • Accelerate disruptive innovations that optimise the bargaining position of horticulture farmers in the supply chain, through innovative, digital, circular, and fair production and trade models.
  • Advocate through inclusive dialogue creating, strengthening and joining networks to enhance access to knowledge and information, facilitates an informed dialogue in which vulnerable groups can speak up, and policy makers can make informed decisions conducted/facilitated.
  • The voice of citizenry amplified through mobilised, activated and engaged citizens and csos to change norms, and influence the policy agenda, for the range of issues highlighted in the problem analysis.
  • Civil society strengthened through building up the ability of farmers, workers, and civil society to claim and defend rights, and influence decision making

2.3 Baseline objectives

The main objective of the baseline survey is to provide information of the target beneficiaries as per the indicators of programme objectives and provide a benchmark for measuring project achievements specified in the programme as per project results framework.

The specific objectives of the baseline survey are:

  • To collect and analyze verifiable indicator data from the project results framework
  • To collect and analyze data on the current state of the project’s targeted beneficiaries (including but not limited to horticulture farmers, horticulture farmer organizations, horticulture related CSOs and umbrella bodies, horticulture regulators, service providers and stakeholders.
  • To produce information to use as a basis for their overall project monitoring and evaluation against the set indicators over the course of the project implementation period.
  • To identify key implementation strategies, modalities and input for the project implementation phase.

2.4 Methodology

The methodology for this study will include both direct and indirect data collection, analysis and cross-referencing, and formulating recommendations thematically and as area/site-specific.

The Consultant will finalize the methodology to undertake this study in line with the scope of the assessment, presented and refined with the management during the inception meeting.

The methodology used during this assessment will overall, include, but not be limited to the following:

  • Review existing relevant secondary information and reports related to the East Africa Horticulture.
  • Review of previous Solidaridad related horticulture programme level documents and reports.
  • Discuss with key Solidaridad staff, partners, and key informants at Office and field implementation levels.
  • Carry out field visits in the implementation areas for data collection, observations, and triangulation.
  • Hold community-level participatory meetings and focused group discussions for data collection and information gathering.
  • Carry out a household-level survey for data collection through structured questionnaires.
  • Data collection will also entail analysis of climate risks and vulnerability where both secondary data and primary data through qualitative and quantitative methodologies will be done.
  • Special emphasis will be put on women spaces, youth engagement, and people with disabilities participation, so as to understand and recommend interventions on issues concerning these interest groups from a gender, youth, and people with disability inclusion’s perspective.
  • Use of data from local institutions or organizations.
  • Data analysis and verification of analyzed data.

2.5 Responsibilities of Consultants / Scope of Work

The composition of the survey team is left up to the consultant/ organization based on their internal system, ideas, and logic. However, Solidaridad recommends that the team comprise one Team Leader (TL) to coordinate/conduct the overall study and liaise with Solidaridad.

To collect information from the field using an adequate number of Field Enumerators (FEs). Supervision of the fieldwork and quality (reliability and validity) of the data/information collected from the field is the primary responsibility of the TL.

The TL will work closely with Solidaridad M&E Officers and the programme team. In each step and process, consultation with the Project Manager and the M&E Officer are vital.

The survey will be conducted in Kenya and Uganda.

The consultancy/consultant team will be primarily responsible for:

  • Development/design baseline survey tools including questionnaires for HH survey and checklist and tools for group interaction including FGD with target beneficiaries at village levels.
  • Share the study design including process, methods, and questionnaires/checklist with the programme team, collect feedback and finalize the study design.
  • Pre‐test questionnaires and other tools in one of the programme sites.
  • Submit an inception report.
  • Debrief/discuss with the programme team about effectiveness of questionnaire, checklists, and other tools used in the pre‐test, collect feedback and finalize them.
  • Orient, train, and supervise the enumerators.
  • Carry out fieldwork together with enumerators.
  • Ensure the quality of information collected from fields, cross-check with the validity of information collected and verify/revise where needed.
  • Update progress of the study on a weekly basis to the M&E Officer.
  • Analyze data and prepare quality reports.
  • Give a presentation of the draft report to Solidaridad, and;
  • Submit a final report (a compiled version of the report ‐ both hard copy and electronic version in word format) to the project after incorporating the feedback and suggestions from Solidaridad.

2.6 Deliverables

Work plan and expression of interest (EOI) for the baseline survey, outlining;

  • A detailed methodology for implementation of the survey, including proposed sample sizes.
  • Draft data collection tools (The Consultant shall refine proposed standard indicators in reference to the proposed programme indicators and other guidelines provided by Solidaridad)
  • A detailed work plan for the survey
  • Presentation of survey methodology to Solidaridad team in an inception meeting and later incorporate suggestions in the final inception report.
  • A draft report of the study for feedback and comments from Solidaridad and partners involved.
  • Presentation on the main findings of the study for validation involving project teams, and other stakeholders as agreed with the project team.

2.7 Expert / Consultant’s Profile

Consultancy firms / companies with verifiable research work in the horticulture sector and who fulfil the following requirements are encouraged to express their interests.

  • Relevant degree(s) in social sciences, Agriculture or development studies,
  • Strong experience with and knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research methods and sampling strategies
  • Experience in designing and conducting studies using experimental or quasi-experimental techniques. Experience with longitudinal study designs desired.
  • Statistical analysis skills and strong proficiency with data analysis packages.
  • Proven experience in conducting baseline study surveys, impact studies and evaluations, preferably on the horticulture industry in the East and Central Africa region.
  • Research experience with horticulture farmers is an added advantage
  • Excellent communication and written skills in English and Swahili.

2.8 Consultancy Period

The overall time frame of the survey will be 45 days (including Saturdays and Sundays), which will include inception meetings, finalizing the survey methodology, training of enumerators, data collection, data analysis, report writing, and presenting findings of the survey.

Activity and Deadline

  1. Interested parties should submit a Technical and Financial proposal. Budget proposals should include logistics costs (transport, communications, meals and accommodation) – by 30th April 2021, 5:00pm (EAT)
  2. Decision of selected consultant – only selected candidates will be contacted – by 7th May 2021
  3. Inception report and meeting (virtual or in-person depending on covid19 situation) – by 14th May 2021, 5:00pm (EAT)
  4. Draft report submitted by 21st June 2021, 5:00pm (EAT)
  5. Validation meeting and final report (virtual or in-person depending on covid19 situation) – by 28th June 2021, 5:00pm (EAT)

Application Process:

The consultancy firms / companies are required to submit an EOI containing a statement on candidate’s experience with similar assignments, curriculum vitae, financial proposal and work plan by 30 April 2021 at 5:00 (EAT).

All applicants must meet the minimum requirements described above, those unable to meet the requirement will not be considered.

Each EOI submission should be not more than 15 pages and include the following:

  • A brief proposal for the study with methodology and work plan.
  • A sample/samples of previous related work.
  • A financial proposal with a budget with breakdowns of different costs involved, to the finer detail. Budget with aggregated figures will not be accepted.
  • Updated CVs for the team leader and team members (each CV not more than 2 pages).
  • Contact details of 3 references with complete contact information (i.e. name, organization, title position, address, email, telephone).

Subject reference: EOI Baseline Survey- RECLAIM SUSTAINABILITY! Food Products Project

Submissions are by email to while addressed to:

Attn: Managing Director
Solidaridad Eastern and Central Africa Expertise Centre
Kilimani Business Centre, Kirichwa Road,
P.O. Box 42234 – 00100 GPO

Note: Canvassing will lead to automatic disqualification and only successful candidate will be contacted.


The consultancy should deliver a technical and financial proposal that will be assessed as follows:

Technical proposal: Max 90 points

Selection criteria and Weight (Points)

1. CV or profile – 45 Points

  • Experience with smallholder, food crops value chain development in Kenya, including private sector/market system development (access to markets)
  • Experience in Kenya / East Africa
  • Experience in gender and youth inclusion
  • Experience in program evaluation, especially of value chain development programs and with qualitative data collection

2. Understanding the assignment, proposed approach and methodology – 45 Points

  • Feedback on ToR
  • Proposed approach & methodology
  • Clarity on roles and responsibilities in team
  • Clarity & adequacy of work schedule
  • Experience in program evaluation

Total: 90 Points

Note: Minimum requirement for technical proposal to be eligible: 70 points out of 90.

Financial Proposal: Maximum 10 points for the lowest eligible bid. Others get proportionally less.

Solidaridad Eastern and Central Africa
Kilimani Business Centre, Kirichwa Road
P.O. Box 42234, 00100, GPO, Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254 716 666 862


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