May 15, 2024

Job Overview

  • Date Posted
    May 15, 2024
  • Expiration date
    May 21, 2024
  • Experience
    5 Years
  • Gender
  • Qualification
    Master’s Degree
  • Organization
  • Required Languages
    English, Krio

Job Description




Call for an Independent Consultant 

Name of Project Reclaim Sustainability!
Assignment Type Call for Consultant
Expected Duration of Assignment 3rd June to the 4th July , 2024 
Title of Assignment Gap Assessment of the Implementation of the National Cocoa Value Chain Policy for the Sierra Leone Cocoa Sector
Country Sierra Leone 


About Solidaridad 

Solidaridad is an international civil society organization with 50 years of global experience facilitating profitable supply chain development. Solidaridad works across 14 commodity supply chains and operates through 8 Regional Expertise Centres on 5 continents. Solidaridad works closely with public and private sector partners to ensure the sustainability of our footprints.


Our vision is an economy that works for all: a world in which all we produce, and all we consume, can sustain us while respecting the planet, each other, and the next generations.


Our Mission is “to 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.



Cocoa holds significant importance in Sierra Leone, presenting ample opportunities for smallholder farmers if they can access the necessary services to enhance sustainable practices and competitiveness. The country’s civil war from 1991 to 2002 caused a decline in cocoa production, impacting its status as a major export crop. Although production and exports have steadily increased since the war, they remain below pre-war levels. Consequently, efforts have been made to revive the cocoa industry, improve its value chain, and enhance competitiveness, albeit hindered by low productivity faced by smallholder farmers.

Despite an increase in cocoa yield from 10,700MT in 2012/13 to 18,000MT in 2016/17, farmers’ expectations are not met due to inadequate access to essential agricultural services, such as farm inputs and extension services, critical for boosting cash crop production.

Cocoa stands as Sierra Leone’s primary agricultural export commodity, with substantial potential to alleviate poverty and drive economic development. However, this potential remains largely untapped. The outlined policy aims to competitively develop the cocoa sector sustainably by 2023, doubling farmers’ incomes, creating job opportunities, addressing food security deficits, and educating farmers on climate change adaptation and mitigation techniques (Climate-Smart Cocoa production).

Under the RECLAIM Sustainability! programme, Solidaridad will collaborate with an independent consultant to thoroughly assess and pinpoint potential gaps in the cocoa value chain policy. This initiative specifically targets issues of land tenure and security, gender inclusivity, and child/forced labour, aiming to improve governance and equitable value distribution within the cocoa value chain. The analysis will encompass various lenses, including technical, policy, gender, and socio-cultural perspectives, examining gaps and bottlenecks across the value chains from production to market.



The overarching objective of the assignment is to engage an independent consultant to undertake a Gap Analysis of the present implementation gaps in Sierra Leone’s national cocoa value chain policy to provide comprehensive recommendations for improvement.


Solidaridad West Africa is seeking a qualified independent consultant to conduct a Gap assessment on the implementation status of the Cocoa value chain policy in Sierra Leone and provide detailed recommendations for its overall improvement and the consultant will conduct the assignment in Sierra Leone. 



Solidaridad West Africa will select an independent research consultant to conduct the Gap Assessment on the National Cocoa Value Chain Policy implementation in Sierra Leone. The selected research consultant will be required to prepare a detailed research methodology in partnership with Solidaridad West Africa. The full details of the methodology to be used for this study will be explained by the consultant in his inception report. However, research methods should include detailed data on target beneficiaries (both direct and indirect beneficiaries), secondary data, and qualitative data. The consultant is required to conduct the assessment using different research methods; desk reviews, qualitative data collection and analysis, using focus groups and key informant interviews, as well as participatory exercises and approaches.

The Cocoa Value Chain Gap Assessment data collection process will involve:  

  • Desk review: The consultant will be in contact with Sierra Leone staff who will share key documents and required literature, and any other official documents, national or international. 
  • Qualitative data: The consultant should use qualitative approaches, such as focus group discussions and key informant interviews, as well as participatory exercises and approaches. 
  • Data triangulation: Triangulation of information gathered during the qualitative research is crucial in this study, with a reflection on how the findings relate to the secondary documentation. The consultant will find a better solution for this clearly explained in the inception report. 


The scope of the assignment will cover but not be limited to government agencies, the private sector, research institutions, farmer groups, civil society organizations, and relevant platforms.

Government agencies: This will include the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, the Produce Monitoring Board (PMB), the Sierra Leone Investment and Export Promotion Agency (SLIEPA), the Ministry of Environment, the National Farmers Federation of Sierra Leone, etc.

Private sector: This will include Capitol Company Limited, Randlyn Holdings, SLPMC, TAS Stores, F.T Saad, etc. 

Civil Society Organizations:  Sierra Leone Cocoa Coffee and Cashew Platform (SLCCCP), SEND-SL, Women in the Media (WIMSL), ACODE-SL, CAST-SL.

Research Institutions: Sierra Agricultural Research Institute and Njala University. 

Farming groups:This includes: Unity Women Agribusiness Enterprise, Liloma Agricultural Cooperative, ADPA Cocoa Farmers’ Cooperative, Wasawah Farmers’ Cooperative, Ngolengombu Cocoa Farmers’ Union, Luawa Cocoa Farmers Cooperative, Yormata Farmers’ Development Association, MOAWOMA, Heuwolacheo Farmers’ Cooperative etc.



The following task is expected during and after the assignment: 

  • Develop a comprehensive assessment tool for data collection and analysis
  • Gather evidence of implementation challenges of the policy
  • Document detailed information on the current status of the implementation of the national cocoa value chain policy in Sierra Leone.
  • Identify and articulate coherently the current situation of the cocoa sector in Sierra Leone.
  • Outline the capacities of Ministries, Departments and Agencies, Research Institutes, CSOs and farmer groups on their involvement in the implementation of the national cocoa value chain policy. 
  • Identify capacity gaps in the implementation  of the national cocoa value chain policy in Sierra Leone.
  • Postulate recommendations for the improvement of national cocoa value chain policy implementation in Sierra Leone. 
  • Generate a picture gallery of stakeholders’ engagement. 
  • Compile a comprehensive report on all findings and recommendations. 




No.  Deliverables  Expected timeline
1 Develop an inception report detailing the methodology for the assessment  1 day 
2 Develop a comprehensive tool for data collection 3 days 
3 Data collection and first draft report for discussion  22 days 
4 A PowerPoint presentation of the findings and recommendations 1 day 
5 Validation report of the findings and recommendations 2 days 
6 Final GAP assessment report  1 day



This assignment will commence on 3rd June  2024 and end on 4th July, 2024


The consultant for the assignment must demonstrate full competence in implementing the scope of work and experience in conducting and completing surveys, report writing and must be an expert with a relevant degree in Statistics, Environmental science, Agribusiness, Agriculture Economics or Development Studies, and relevant sector background. Desired competencies include:

  • At least, a Master’s degree in Statistics, Environment Science, Agricultural Economics and Development Studies or a relevant postgraduate qualification. Qualification in Advocacy and Policy will be an added advantage
  • Proficient in the use of relevant statistical tools for qualitative and quantitative data analysis
  • Excellent analytical and report writing skills
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, including the ability to facilitate and work in a multidisciplinary team
  • Experience in qualitative and quantitative research methods
  • Minimum of five (5) years of related experience in carrying out similar studies, especially in the cocoa sector 
  • Demonstrated capacity in data processing/analysis to generate frequencies and some statistical and econometric results 
  • Excellent English language skills (with proven grammatical writing ability)
  • Experience in working in the agricultural value chain 


0.9. Suggested Structure for the Gap Assessment Report 

  1. Title Page 
  2. Executive summary 
  3. List of Acronyms 
  4. List of Figures
  5. List of Tables
  6. Main report  


Description of intervention and context

Findings on assessment research themes

Lessons learnt

Key issues




List of references

List of key informants and data sources


  1. How to apply

Applicants must submit a technical and financial proposal through the email addresses consultantsswasl@solidaridadnetwork.org before 24th May 2024. Please note that only shortlisted applicants will be contacted for the next stage.