USAID Trade Reform and Development in Egypt (TRADE) Activity
Land O’Lakes Venture37 is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to helping communities around the world build economies by strengthening local agriculture, helping agribusinesses create jobs and linking farmers to markets. Since 1981, it has implemented over 315 integrated dairy, livestock and crops development programs in nearly 80 countries — creating lasting impact by linking farmers, businesses, and the public and private sector in local and global contexts. Land O’Lakes Venture37’s long-standing affiliation with Land O’Lakes, Inc. sets it apart. Land O’Lakes, Inc. is one of America’s largest farmer-owned cooperatives. It supports Land O’Lakes Venture37 project implementation with nearly 100 years of expertise in dairy, animal nutrition, crop inputs and agricultural insights and technologies. This gives Land O’Lakes Venture37 development projects a unique global view of agriculture, food and the power of well-functioning market systems. Land O’Lakes, Inc. supports these efforts as part of its enterprise purpose of Feeding Human Progress at home and around the world.
The USAID Trade Reform and Development in Egypt (TRADE) Activity is a five-year, $36.3 million contract implemented by Palladium with technical support from Land O’Lakes Venture37 and a consortium of other international and local subcontractors. The TRADE Activity will increase Egypt’s international trade by increasing exports from SMEs, and in particular New and Expanding Export-Ready Enterprises (NEEREs). This will be achieved by addressing the constraints that impede the competitiveness of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs). Over the life of the contract, the TRADE Activity will attain the following three Results:
1) Enhanced Export Capacity of SMEs, in particular NEEREs;
2) Strengthened Public and Private Trade-Support Institutions; and,
3) Improved Trade and Investment Policy, Regulatory and Institutional Environment.
Under Result 3, the TRADE Activity is providing technical assistance to the newly established National Food Safety Authority (NFSA) of Egypt to improve trade through increasing NEERE exports and reducing the time and cost of exporting and importing food products.
Purpose and Objective of the Consultancy:
The Consultant will provide technical support to NFSA’s Conformity Assessment Department to develop evaluation criteria and a checklist to assess conformity assessment bodies (CABs) that are seeking to register with NFSA to conduct pre-shipment inspections for imported food consignments, issue food safety management system certificates (ISO 22000, BRC, etc.) to food establishments on the domestic market, or issue certificates of conformity for exported food consignments. The evaluation criteria and checklist should incorporate international standards such as ISO 17020, 17021, and 17026 and be in accordance with NFSA’s Board of Directors Decisions No. 5 of the Year 2019 (Registration of Food Safety Management Systems Certification Bodies), No. 2 of the year 2019 (Registration of Inspection and Audit of Conformity Assessment Bodies Issuing Certificates for Exported Food Consignments, and No. 2 of the year 2020 (Registration of Conformity Assessment Bodies Issuing Certificates of Conformity for Imported Food Consignments). The completed evaluation criteria and checklist shall assist NFSA to assess the reliability of results, ensuring only capable CABs are approved and to monitor CABs’ performance in the future. Following the development of the evaluation criteria and checklist, the Consultant shall provide training to NFSA’s Conformity Assessment Department on applying and updating the checklist.
The evaluation criteria and checklist will be included as part of a broader standard operating procedure (SOP) that is being developed with support of the USDA TAIB project. The Consultant shall work closely with the TAIB project and NFSA in developing the evaluation criteria and checklist to ensure integration, and it is expected that the evaluation criteria and checklist will go through multiple iterations before being approved by NFSA.
Under this scope of work, the Consultant is expected to complete the following tasks:
– Review relevant NFSA’s Technical Regulations, such as: Decisions No 2 and 5 of the year 2019, and Decision No. 2 of the year 2020.
– In accordance with the requirements from NFSA’s Technical Regulations and based on international standards, draft evaluation criteria for NFSA to assess the reliability and capabilities of CABs seeking to register with NFSA to conduct conformity assessments for imported and exported food and to issue food safety management system certificates for domestic establishments.
– Based upon the approved evaluation criteria, draft a checklist for assessing CABs applying to register with NFSA.
– Cooperate with the TAIB project to integrate the evaluation criteria and checklist into the SOP for NFSA’s Conformity Assessment Department.
– Develop and provide training to NFSA on utilizing the checklist to evaluate CABs.
– Following the training, update the evaluation criteria and checklist based on feedback from NFSA (if required).
Under this scope of work, the Consultant is expected to complete the following deliverables:
– Develop an evaluation framework / criteria for assessing CABs. The evaluation framework should be in accordance with NFSA’s regulatory framework and incorporate international practices such as ISO 17020, 17021, and 17026. All elements of the evaluation criteria shall be clearly benchmarked and referenced.
– Based on the agreed upon evaluation framework / criteria, develop a checklist for NFSA to assess the reliability, capabilities and performance of CABs.
– 2-day training provided to NFSA’s Conformity Assessment Department on the evaluation criteria and utilizing the checklist.
– Brief consultancy report in English describing the purpose of the consultancy, progress achieved, observations, issues and/or problems encountered, and details of expected follow-on activities by USAID TRADE or its counterparts.
– Demonstrated experience in food safety auditing and in developing food safety related checklists;
– Demonstrated knowledge in food safety management systems;
– Previous experience working for a conformity assessment body;
– Previous experience and /or knowledge working with ISO 9001, 17020, 17021 or 17026 standards.
– Previous experience working with an accreditation body preferred;
– Ability to work collaboratively as part of a team and effectively communicate.
Reporting: The Consultant will report to TRADE’s Senior Advisor for Food Safety and Trade.
Level of Effort and Period of Performance: The selected individual will be awarded an independent consultancy contract with a level of effort ceiling of 20 days through on or about February 28, 2022. Payment will be made on the basis of a fixed daily rate for actual time spent in completion of approved deliverables under the contract.