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Consultant- Central America Cacao

Location:Baltimore, MD
Employment Type:Seasonal - Full Time
Lutheran World Relief has nearly 75 years of demonstrated expertise helping rural communities living in poverty adapt to the challenges that threaten their livelihoods and well-being. Our international team of experts develops the most effective tools to help people achieve self-sufficiency. We apply solutions specific to the needs of each community, such as providing access to capital for small businesses or helping farmers adapt to changing climate conditions. Our long history of partnership with local communities, businesses, and governments enables in-country professionals to lift up local knowledge and leverage relationships that drive results. By investing in people and their skills, and strengthening their ability to adapt, LWR enables those living in poverty to build the resilience they need to thrive.
LWR seeks to grow and better support the needs of cacao value chain actors, including producers, traders, buyers, and policy makers. LWR seeks a consultant who can conduct a series of field interviews to analyze Central America's cacao value chain challenges, particularly from the point of post-harvest processing to export. The consultant will identify:
• Challenges for each actor along with cacao value chain (emphasis on which actor, whether the producer, trader, or buyer, will be dependent on country)
• Cacao value chain local buyers and processors, particularly for the United States fine flavor chocolate market;
• Strategies for successful market linkages between local buyers and processors;
• Bean to bar companies within the United States that purchase from Central America;
• Successful project models to improve the cacao value chain;

The consultant will be expected to conduct desk research and informational field interviews in the United States and in target countries to provide a robust analysis of the cacao value chain in Central America. It is anticipated these countries will include, but are not limited to, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. This research should be conducted in close consultation with LWR's Latin America staff. In particular, the consultant will be asked to:

1. Map key actors (donors, implementing organizations, private sector, foundations) in the cacao value chain.
2. Identify current programming in the cacao value chain within Central America.
3. Collaborate with LWR Latin America staff to identify a list of individuals and groups to interview regarding cacao value chain challenges.
4. Conduct, in conjunction with LWR staff, the series of interviews to identify cacao value chain opportunities and challenges.
5. Provide recommendations on gaps/niches LWR can fill to address cacao value chain challenges focusing primarily on market access but also including areas we may not already be working in but should consider entering.
6. Produce a report with an analysis of the cacao value chain export market challenges in each country.
Duration of the Assignment
LWR is looking for someone who can begin immediately, and expect the assignment to conclude by the middle of October. This is not a full-time assignment but may take 30-45 days in total.

Knowledge and familiarity with cacao value chain stakeholders and institutional donors (US Government donors preferred). Previous experience with INGOs and LWR's program areas of cacao required. Fluency in Spanish and English is required.
Interested candidates should provide a cover letter and CV detailing their experience, any similar assignments, and their proposed budget for the assignment. Applicants should send this information to Sara Jane Baublitz:

LWR Consultant: Expected Deliverables

1. Inception Report:
The Inception Report will describe the consultant's understanding of the terms of reference, propose modifications to or provide additional detail about the methodology the consultant will use, detail the primary and secondary sources the consultant will consult by objective, describe the consultant's plan to solicit feedback and verification from LWR staff during the assignment, present the detailed work plan and confirm timing of the deliverables.

2. Draft Report:
A report synthesizing the secondary data collected and identifying key individuals for informational interviews. Data and individuals will be collected in collaboration with LWR Latin America team. The consultant will hold a conference with selected LWR HQ and Field staff to present the preliminary findings and recommendations and solicit feedback and additional areas for investigation.

3. Travel to Field to Conduct Stakeholder Interviews:
Conduct in-country interviews with cacao value chain actors identified in the initial report with LWR Field Staff.

4. Final Report:
The consultant will present the final report in the format agreed to after the draft report consultations. The final report will consolidate information gathered during desk research and in person interview. The final report should, to the extent practical within the agreed-on methodology and resources, answer the primary objectives and address feedback received during the draft report consultations.

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