Consultant- Ethiopia Crop Production Mapping & Assessment-Remote

Programs Anywhere, United States


About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.


Mercy Corps, in partnership with the Danish Refugee Council (DRC), is implementing the 44-month, ‘Strengthened Socio-Economic Development and Better Employment Opportunities for Refugees and Host Communities (STEDE) in the Jigjiga Area’ Action (“action”). The action aims to improve employment and livelihood opportunities for up to 54,000 vulnerable refugee and host community in Fafan Zone which hosts about thirty-six thousand refugees in the three camps of Awbarre, Sheder and Kabribeyah towns. Mercy Corps, in partnership with CARE, is implementing the USAID-funded Feed the Future Resilience in Pastoral Areas (RiPA-North) project in the region. The RiPA program aims to improve the resilience capacities of households, markets and governance institutions in the region, collectively contributing to enhanced food security and inclusive economic growth for over 129,000 households. The RiPA program targeted 11 woredas in three zone (Siti, Fafan and Degahabur zone) in Somali region.

A key sector identified by the STEDE and RiPA programs with significant growth potential is the agro processing sector (e.g. sesame, vegetables etc.). This can increase demand for high-quality and increased production on the farmer supply side, and create employment opportunities on the processing side. The programs would like further explore these opportunities through a deeper analysis in the real potential level of production for the selected types of crops, investment requirements and the enabling environment that supports interventions.  

Mercy Corps is seeking an international consultant to work remotely with a team of local consultants and Mercy Corps team members in designing, undertaking and writing-up the assessment findings. 

Consultant Objectives

There are three main objectives of the consultancy: 

  1. Quantitatively map and analyze current crop production in all the six Woredas of Fafan Zone: Aw Bare; Kabribayax; Gursum; Babile Jigjiga and Harshin in Somali Region of Ethiopia
  2. Assess the potential for agro-processing enterprises and provide recommendations for business models to support
  3. Quantitatively map and analyze crop production and existing end-markets

The aim of this objective is to identify current and potential crop production in all the six Woredas of Fafan Zone to inform decision-making about support for agro inputs (e.g. seed) production and agri-processing enterprises in the targeted zone. This objective will include: 

  • Quantitatively map and analyze existing production potential by type of crops, productivity/yield of adapted crops varieties and vegetables in the Zones (e.g. oil seeds, sorghum, maize, wheat, tomatoes etc.), and map whether production is possible through irrigation vs rain-fed; 
  • Analyze the potential for increased production (e.g. yields/hectare or expansion of land under cultivation) for different crop varieties, including increased irrigated agriculture; 
  • Identify the potential for refugees and host communities to participate in production of these crops (i.e. as farmers or laborers);  
  • Analyze the existing demand for the produced crops in the region, in neighboring regions or cross border demand, and the implications of this for agro-processing enterprises
Assess the potential for small-, medium-  and large-scale agro-processing enterprises and provide recommendations for business models to support
  • Map the existing agro-processing capacity in Fafan Zone and neighboring areas
  • Assess the viability of agro-processing for different products, for example using a viability / prioritization matrix. Jointly with Mercy Corps, identify high-priority types of agro-processing to develop recommendations for; For the high-priority types of agro-processing, develop recommendations for business models including enterprise-size, location, and technological sophistication (equipment requirements) 
  • Synthesize data on local, domestic and cross-border demand for processed products, and conduct competitiveness analysis for processed products including potential obstacles for market penetration; 
  • Assess availability and need of post-harvest storage facilities for the selected markets and the challenge and opportunities of the existing post-harvest storage facilities 
  • Determine investment requirements at different scales, and include high-level cost-benefit analysis for different potential processing investments to product profitability and attractiveness for investors;
  • Develop detailed investment risk register
  • Include any other points that the consultant may wish to explore which would add value to the report in the proposal  

Consultant Activities
The Consultant will:

  • Support national consultants to conduct a desk study of background documents to address consultancy objectives stated above  
  • With national consultants lead the process of developing the methodology to quantitatively and qualitatively map crop production in the identified Zones 
  • Support national consultants to develop viable agro processing models for selected products 
  • Ensure the quality of report, assessment findings and technical recommendations 
  • Provide framework, tools and guide project teams to conduct similar undertaking in the single Zones.

Consultant Deliverables

The Consultant will be responsible, with the national consultant, to deliver the following

  1. Detailed methodology for the assessment 
  2. Report on current and potential production including quantitative data sources and geo-maps (Objective 1)
  3.  Assessment of viability of different agro-processing options, including matrix (Objective 2)
  4. Business models and technical recommendations for high-priority agro-processing options
  5. Summary report 


This consultancy is to be completed on the 31
st December 2020. The consultant(s) should propose a detailed work plan including the Level of Effort (# of days) required to complete each task in the Scope of Work.  

Required Experience & Skills

The ideal consultant will have the following experience and skills: 

  • At least 10 years of experience in conducting researches and feasibility studies for agriculture and agro-processing in rural context
  • Understanding of crop production and agronomical practices in the Ethiopia and different ecological zones 
  • Understanding of the Agro processing sector in the country and experience in building business cases and models for small scale manufacturing and processors
  • Knowledge of agro-processing equipment available in Ethiopia and importation requirements for international equipment
  • Knowledge of viable business models for processing firms to secure supply chain from multiple farmers required
  • Ability to work remotely with national consultants in Ethiopia required, and willingness to travel to Ethiopia if safety allows 
  • Knowledge of the Somali Region context is preferred

English fluency required; Somali language skills are a strong added advantage

All deliverables must be approved by: 

MC Director of Programs 

Chief of Party – RiPA to be considered final.

The Consultant(s) will report to: 

STEDE program, consortium Manager 

MC Ethiopia Senior Advisor – Market Systems Development

Component three Team lead, RiPA 

The Consultant(s) will work closely with:

STEDE program , consortium Manager 

MC Ethiopia Senior Advisor – Market Systems Development

Leads from RiPA

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Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives. 

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today. 

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Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact. 

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