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Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA)-Request for Proposals for a post-sales assessment-Burkina Faso-August 2020

Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CNFA)-Request for Proposals for a post-sales assessment-Burkina Faso

  • Posted on 3 August 2020
  • Burkina Faso
  • Closing on 17 August 2020

Section 1: Introduction, Technical Background and Scope of Work

1.1 Introduction:

The Pro-Cashew project is a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) program implemented by CNFA in Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Benin, Ghana, and Burkina Faso. The goal of the Pro Cashew project is to implement activities to:

– Increase productivity and efficiency of actors in the cashew value chain through strengthening the capacities of cooperatives/producer organizations, nursery systems and input suppliers and strengthening data collection and dissemination systems.

– Improve and expand the trade of cashew and cashew products through improving crop quality; rehabilitating and renovating orchards; addressing gaps in data collection, analysis and dissemination; strengthening public-private partnerships; and encouraging harmonized regional policies to supply products that meet market demands.

These activities will be supported by proceeds from the market sale (monetization) of U.S. agricultural commodities. CNFA intends to procure services from an independent evaluator to complete a post-sale monetization assessment and document the effects of monetization which will be implemented in Burkina Faso.

1.2: Scope of Work:

  1. BACKGROUND

While the original proposal was to monetize rice in Cote d’Ivoire, due to market changes, CNFA had to reassess and USDA approved the monetization of milled rice in ECOWAS member countries. The proceeds will only be used to support the implementation of the program in the five above mentioned countries. The first part is due to arrive in Cote d’Ivoire for a buyer in Burkina Faso in September/October 2020. CNFA anticipates that the second part will arrive in Cote d’Ivoire for the same buyer under the same sales agreement in February/March 2021.

  1. OBJECTIVE

The primary objective of this study is to complete a post-sale monetization assessment to document the effects of monetization in Burkina Faso and to determine whether monetization sales caused any adverse market impacts. Adverse impacts may include displacing commercial trade and discouraging local food production. CNFA intends to issue an RFP to identify a qualified, independent consultant or firm to conduct the stated assessment.

1.3: Period of Performance:

To begin work as soon as possible in September 2020 and with an anticipated duration of 24 months, or until one year after the final shipment has been received by the buyer.

1.4: Tasks:

CNFA signed an agreement to monetize to Burkina Faso 63,000 MT of Milled Rice in two tranches, 50% each. The estimated arrival time October 2020, and March 2021. The selected offeror will conduct an in-depth assessment on the impact of the monetization of U.S. commodity- the milled rice, on Burkina Faso’s local economy, including both desk-based and in-country studies. Data

should be collected from both primary and secondary sources of information – including for one year after the final installment. The assessment should use a mixed-method approach that applies qualitative and quantitative techniques and triangulates information from different methods to enhance the reliability of the findings. The offeror needs to use time series data and propose a methodology for examining price impacts, i.e. an event study.

The assessment should seek to address the following key questions.

The assessment must answer the following questions:

  • To what extent did monetization affect local production and consumption in the short- (few months after monetization), medium-(1 year after monetization), and long-term (subsequent marketing year)?
  • To what extent did monetization displace commercial trade in the short- medium-, and long-term?
  • Are there any substitute commodities for the selected commodity? If so, did the monetization of the selected commodity impact production/marketing of substitute commodities?
  • Was the timing and volume of the sale appropriate?
  • Did sales occur as intended or was there a lag because of unforeseen conditions in the market?
  • What were the initial PVO estimates for price and quantity? What were the actual prices and quantities of the commodities sold?
  • To what extent was in-country storage utilization affected?
  • Was the transportation infrastructure affected?
  • Were buying patterns of local and international actors affected? If so, what was the magnitude and length of the change?
  • Was there an effect on prices? If so at what level?
  • What happened to local and international prices during this time period? (Sudden change higher or lower that was unusual)?
  • Do price fluctuations follow global/regional patterns?
  • Were there any other market factors that could have impacted prices during that time? (For example, adverse weather affecting production, the one corn processor had their mill damaged/prolonged power outage and stopped buying corn (which may cause lower local prices for farmers), etc.)
  • Market information that would be helpful to discuss in the analysis would include the following:
  • Market context – how the commodity is produced, consumed/processed, traded, marketed generally in the context of this country/region. This would also include a discussion of relevant country policies and regulations that impact the market dynamics of the commodity. Prices (in country- (ideally farm gate prices if the commodity or substitute commodity is produced locally, prices where the commodity is being used) and international) –if prices are in the local currency, there should be some discussion as to what is happening to the currency vs the U.S. dollar over the time period.
  • Commodity supply and demand balance sheet for a few years prior and current year (i.e. similar to USDA’s PSD or Production, Supply, and Distribution) for the commodity and country. Evaluators may use USDA PSD balance sheets for a commodity and country if they are available. USDA PSD estimates should be cross checked with local market analysts and discrepancies should be noted and discussed in the Market Assessment. A supply and demand balance sheet include estimates for the following and balances (i.e. Supply equals Demand):
    • Supply:
      • Beginning Stocks (this is different than storage capacity)
      • Production (including estimates of acreage planted and harvested AND yield)
      • Imports
    • Demand:
      • Consumption (human, for feeding animals (if applicable), residual)
      • Exports
      • Ending stocks

The selected consultant or firm may choose to refine these questions or propose new or alternative questions.

Offerors must submit the following:

– Work plan: including a timeline specifying key activities and deliverables

– Estimated Budget

– Data Quality Assurance Plan

– Data collection strategy/tools

1.5: Deliverables: The offeror shall deliver to CNFA the following deliverables, in accordance with the schedule set forth below:

Deliverable 1: Baseline Market Context

This is a comprehensive market profile for Burkina Faso. A sound market profile is crucial to ensuring an effective monetization assessment; all efforts must pivot off a clear understanding of the market and value chain dynamics. Also important to the study is the potential impact of the monetization Burkina Faso. As such, the deliverable should include:

– Supply and demand analysis for the specific commodity in Burkina Faso

– Value chain analysis in terms of linkages between supply (domestic and imported) and end use

– Market Structure; a detailed evaluation of the concentration of market power in the sector

– Transportation

– Trade/regulatory dynamics

– Competing products

– Product quality- domestic and imported

This deliverable is to be provided in Microsoft Word Format (supporting data may be delivered as annexes in Excel format). Relevant quantitative data as well as complete records and analysis of qualitative surveying are to be detailed in full.

Deliverable 2: Initial Monetization report

This deliverable is to provide the initial assessment of the post monetization and explain the impact of the monetization on the local economy. This is also to include all data collection tools and clean data set. This deliverable is to be coupled with a stand alone 3-page brief (at the minimum), which is to describe the evaluation design, key findings and other relevant considerations. This deliverable will include quantitative analysis based on the alignment of the appropriate data with the most effective quantitative analysis approach. one or more of the following methodologies will be employed to analyze the monetization’s impacts on the local commodity prices:

1- Mean differences tests

2- Structural break tests

3- Relative Price of a Substitute Good Model

4- Cumulative Abnormal Returns

5- Comparison of Observed Prices with Predicted Prices

Deliverable 3: Final Report and Presentation

Including assessments’ results. The final report will contain a robust overview of the findings. It builds off the first two deliverables and address any final observations in the market following the conclusion of the monetization process. Included in the final report will be a final, standalone analysis that assesses the monetization impact. Additionally, the final report will have an attachment that includes the calculated Herfindahl-Hirschman Index, and explains how it was calculated including the number of firms.

1.6: Deliverables Schedule

The successful offeror shall submit the deliverables described above in accordance with a realistic deliverables schedule, as defined by the offeror, and outlined below:

Deliverable Number*

Deliverable Name

Due Date**

1

Deliverable 1: Baseline Market Context

2

Deliverable 2: Initial Monetization report

3

Deliverable 3: Final Report, Herfindahl-Hirschman Index and Presentation

Section 2: Instructions to Offerors

2.1 Offer Deadline and Protocol: Offers must be received no later than 5pm EST, on August 17th, 2020. Offers must be mailed to adolan@cnfa.org.”

Please reference the RFP number in any response to this RFP. Offers received after the specified time and date will be considered late and will be considered only at the discretion of CNFA. The cover page of this solicitation summarizes the important dates of the solicitation process. Offerors must strictly follow the provided deadlines to be considered for award.

2.2 Questions: Questions regarding the technical or administrative requirements of this RFP may be submitted no later than 5pm EST on August 10th, 2020 by email to Alexander Dolan at adolan@cnfa.org. Questions must be submitted in writing; phone calls will not be accepted. Questions and requests for clarification—and the responses thereto—that CNFA believes may be of interest to other offerors will be circulated to all RFP recipients who have indicated an interest in bidding.

Only the written answers issued by CNFA will be considered official and carry weight in the RFP process and subsequent evaluation. Any verbal information received from employees of CNFA or any other entity should not be considered as an official response to any questions regarding this RFP.

2.3 Evaluation and Award: The award will be made to a responsible offeror whose offer follows the RFP instructions, meets the eligibility requirements, and is determined via a trade-off analysis to be the best value based on application of the below evaluation criteria. Best value determination will consider both technical and financial proposals, i.e., the best approach and anticipated results in combination with a reasonable cost. Proposed costs must reflect and clearly match the degree of sophistication of the technical approach.

The relative importance of each individual criterion is indicated by the number of points below:

Evaluation Criteria

Criteria Description

Maximum Points

Technical Approach

Assessment Approach/Methodology, including resourcing and deliverables

Soundness of data collection strategy, data collection tools, and quality of approach for a reliable baseline

20

Quality of Work Plan, including timeline

Detailed plan in accordance with deliverables required; justification for timeline/spacing of deliverables; ability to begin in month of January

20

Total Points – Technical Approach

40

Past Performance

Past Performance

Measurement of past performances and relevant experiences. References are required to verify information

40

Total Points – Past Performance

40

Cost Proposal

Cost

Evaluation of the overall cost presented in the offer in relation to efficiency and appropriateness.

20

Total Points – Cost Proposal

20

TOTAL OFFER POINTS

100

Best-offer proposals are requested. It is anticipated that award will be made solely on the basis of these original proposals. However, CNFA reserves the right to conduct any of the following:

· CNFA may conduct negotiations with and/or request clarifications from any offeror prior to award;

· While preference will be given to offerors who can address the full technical requirements of this RFP, CNFA may issue a partial award or split the award among various suppliers, if in the best interest of the PRO-Cashew Project;

· CNFA may cancel this RFP at any time.

Award will be issued only to the entity which submits a proposal in response to this RFP. CNFA will not issue an award to different offerors, entities, or third-parties other than the selected offeror(s).

CNFA anticipates awarding a Fixed Price Contract to the successful offeror.

2.4 Cost Proposal: Pricing must be presented in United States Dollars. Offerors are required to submit proposed payment terms and proposed payment schedule if applicable. Failure to submit proposed payment terms may lead to disqualification of an offer from consideration. Offers must remain valid for not less than three (3) months after the offer deadline. Offerors are requested to provide offers on official letterhead in accordance with the format provided in Annex 3.

2.5 Proposal Format Instructions: All proposals must be formatted in accordance with the below requirements:

(a) English language only

(b) Include the individual/agency/organization name, date, RFP number, and page numbers as a header or footer throughout the document.

A full proposal will include the following documents:

(a) A cover letter on company letterhead, signed by an authorized representative of the offeror (Annex 1).

(b) A complete Technical Proposal in response to the evaluation criteria in Section 2.3 and in the format provided in Annex 2.

(c) A complete Cost Proposal in response to the terms of Section 2.4, the evaluation criteria in Section 2.3, and in the format provided in Annex 3.

(d) A copy of the offeror’s business license, or, if an individual, a copy of his/her identification card.

(e) 3 contacts for references from organizations/individuals for which the offeror has successfully performed similar work.

Annex 1 – Offeror Cover Letter

The following cover letter must be placed on letterhead and completed/signed/stamped by a representative authorized to sign on behalf of the offeror:

To: PRO-Cashew

1828 L St NW #710,

Washington, DC 20036

Reference: RFP no. 01/2020

To Whom It May Concern:

We, the undersigned, hereby provide the attached offer to perform all work required to complete the activities and requirements as described in the above-referenced RFP. Please find our offer attached.

We hereby acknowledge and agree to all terms, conditions, special provisions, and instructions included in the above-referenced RFP. We further certify that the below-named firm—as well as the firm’s principal officers and all commodities and services offered in response to this RFP—are eligible to participate in this procurement under the terms of this solicitation and under USDA regulations.

Furthermore, we hereby certify that, to the best of our knowledge and belief:

· We have no close, familial, or financial relationships with any CNFA or PRO-Cashew project staff members;

· We have no close, familial, or financial relationships with any other offerors submitting proposals in response to the above-referenced RFP; and

· The prices in our offer have been arrived at independently, without any consultation, communication, or agreement with any other offeror or competitor for the purpose of restricting competition.

· All information in our proposal and all supporting documentation is authentic and accurate.

· We understand and agree to CNFA’s prohibitions against fraud, bribery, and kickbacks.

· We understand and agree to CNFA’s prohibitions against funding or associating with individuals or organizations engaged in terrorism or trafficking in persons activities.

We hereby certify that the enclosed representations, certifications, and other statements are accurate, current, and complete.

Authorized Signature:____________________

Name & Title of

Signatory:_______________________________

Date:___________________________________

Company Name:_________________________

Company Address:_______________________

________________________________________

Telephone:______________________________

Website:________________________________

Company Registration or Taxpayer ID Number:________________________________

Does the company have an active bank account? (Y/N):__________________________

Official name associated with the bank account (for payment): ___________________________________________________________________________________

Annex 2 – Technical Proposal

1. Introduction and Past Performance

Introduce your organization highlighting your qualifications to perform this assessment. Noteworthy details to mention include but are not limited to:

• • Number of years of experience with more detailed description of work experience related to the assignment and tasks at hand within the previous 5 years

• • Experience working in Mozambique or the region is highly desired

• • Previous experience and institutional knowledge of assessing the impact of monetization

• • Experience working with USDA funded projects

Offerors must provide a minimum of 3 references for work provided within the previous 3 years to verify this information.

2. Technical Approach (40 points)

The technical proposal should reflect the offeror’s deep knowledge of the local commodity market and making appropriate use of evaluation best practices in line with international technical standards. The offer should also show the offeror’s experience with quantitative and qualitative evaluation methodologies; additional training and expertise in applied economics and/or other social sciences relevant to the study (e.g. agronomy, anthropology, economics, statistics, or related area).

Explain your approach to answer the questions in Section 1.4 – Tasks. Describe the data collection strategy to be used and how they will answer the questions. Incorporate how specific data collection tools will be used in this process. It is important to describe the quality of your approach for a reliable baseline, as this baseline will be the foundation the entire assessment.

Team expertise:

The offer should include the key personnel in charge of the project. Information includes the name, degree and years of expertise. Language skills must include English and Portuguese writing and communication skills, to ensure ability to communicate effectively with people from different backgrounds and different levels of management and to work independently to meet deadlines, pay special attention

3. Quality of Work Plan, including timeline

Provide a detailed work plan in accordance with the deliverables required and a justification for the timeline and spacing of deliverables. Offerors should be available to begin work in the month of January.

Offerors must also complete the below deliverables schedule with proposed deliverable due dates for the assignment:

Deliverable Number

Deliverable Number

Due Date**

1.

Work Plan

2.

Estimated Budget

3.

Data Quality Assurance Plan

4.

Data Collection Strategy/Tools

5.

Clean Data Sets

6.

Stand-Alone Brief

7.

Draft Post-Monetization Market Assessment

8.

Study Outline and Methodology Presentation

9.

Final Report

Proposals shall detail the estimated length of time required to accomplish all requirements, with detail on individual activity implementation dates, as referenced in the Scope of Work.

Annex 3 – Cost Proposal

Cost Item

Unit

Quantity

Unit Price

(USD)

Total Price

(USD)

Notes

1. Personnel/labor

2. Equipment

3. Materials and supplies

4. Transportation

5. Communications

7. Other Direct Costs

TOTAL BUDGET

Note: Proposed payment terms and payment schedule must be included in the cost proposal.

Annex 4 – CNFA Terms and Conditions

4.1 Ethical and Business Conduct Requirements: CNFA is committed to integrity in procurement, and only selects suppliers based on objective business criteria such as price and technical merit.

CNFA does not tolerate fraud, collusion among offerors, falsified proposals/bids, bribery, or kickbacks. Any firm or individual violating these standards will be disqualified from this procurement, barred from future procurement opportunities, and may be reported to both USDA and the Office of the Inspector General.

Employees and agents of CNFA are strictly prohibited from asking for or accepting any money, fee, commission, credit, gift, gratuity, object of value or compensation from current or potential vendors or suppliers in exchange for or as a reward for business. Employees and agents engaging in this conduct are subject to termination and will be reported to USDA and the Office of the Inspector General. In addition, CNFA will inform USDA and the Office of the Inspector General of any supplier offers of money, fee, commission, credit, gift, gratuity, object of value or compensation to obtain business.

Offerors responding to this RFP must include the following as part of the proposal submission:

· Disclose any close, familial, or financial relationships with CNFA or project staff. For example, if an offeror’s cousin is employed by the project, the offeror must state this.

· Disclose any family or financial relationship with other offerors submitting proposals. For example, if the offeror’s father owns a company that is submitting another proposal, the offeror must state this.

· Certify that the prices in the offer have been arrived at independently, without any consultation, communication, or agreement with any other offeror or competitor for the purpose of restricting competition.

· Certify that all information in the proposal and all supporting documentation are authentic and accurate.

· Certify understanding and agreement to CNFA’s prohibitions against fraud, bribery and kickbacks.

Please contact adolan@cnfa.org with any questions or concerns regarding the above information or to report any potential violations. Potential violations may also be reported directly to CNFA via email at FraudHotline@cnfa.org or you may make an anonymous report by calling the CNFA Global Complaint Hotline at 202-991-0931.

4.2 Terms and Conditions: This solicitation is subject to CNFA’s standard terms and conditions. Any resultant award will be governed by these terms and conditions; a copy of the full terms and conditions is available upon request. Please note the following terms and conditions will apply:

(a) CNFA’s standard payment terms are net 30 days after receipt and acceptance of any commodities or deliverables. Payment will only be issued to the entity submitting the offer in response to this RFP and identified in the resulting award; payment will not be issued to a third party.

(b) No commodities or services may be supplied that are manufactured or assembled in, shipped from, transported through, or otherwise involving any of the following countries: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Syria.

(c) Any international air or ocean transportation or shipping carried out under any award resulting from this RFP must take place on U.S.-flag carriers/vessels.

(d) United States law prohibits transactions with, and the provision of resources and support to, individuals and organizations associated with terrorism. The supplier under any award resulting from this RFP must ensure compliance with these laws.

(e) United States law prohibits engaging in any activities related to Trafficking in Persons. The supplier under any award resulting from this RFP must ensure compliance with these laws.

(f) The title to any goods supplied under any award resulting from this RFP shall pass to CNFA following delivery and acceptance of the goods by CNFA. Risk of loss, injury, or destruction of the goods shall be borne by the offeror until title passes to CNFA.

4.3 Disclaimers: This is a Request for Proposals only. Issuance of this RFP does not in any way obligate CNFA, the PRO-Cashew Project, or USDA to make an award or pay for costs incurred by potential offerors in the preparation and submission of an offer. In addition:

(a) CNFA may cancel RFP and not award;

(b) CNFA may reject any or all responses received;

(c) Issuance of RFP does not constitute award commitment by CNFA;

(d) CNFA reserves the right to disqualify any offer based on offeror failure to follow RFP instructions;

(e) CNFA will not compensate offerors for response to RFP;

(f) CNFA reserves the right to issue award based on initial evaluation of offers without further discussion;

(g) CNFA may negotiate with short-listed offerors for their best and final offer;

(h) CNFA reserves the right to order additional quantities or units with the selected offeror;

(i) CNFA may reissue the solicitation or issue formal amendments revising the original RFP specifications and evaluation criteria before or after receipt of proposals;

(j) CNFA may modify the specifications without issuing a formal notice to all offerors when the revisions are immaterial to the scope of the RFP;

(k) CNFA may choose to award only part of the activities in the RFP, or issue multiple awards based on multiple RFP activities;

(l) CNFA reserves the right to waive minor proposal deficiencies that can be corrected prior to award determination to promote competition;

(m) CNFA will contact all offerors to confirm contact person, address, and that the bid was submitted for this RFP;

(n) CNFA will contact all offerors to inform them whether or not they were selected for award;

In submitting a response to this RFP, offerors understand that USDA is not a party to this solicitation and the offeror agrees that any protest hereunder must be presented – in writing with full explanations – to the PRO-Cashew Project for consideration. USDA will not consider protests regarding procurements carried out by implementing partners. CNFA, at its sole discretion, will make a final decision on any protest for this procurement.

4.4 Source/Nationality/Manufacture: All goods and services offered in response to this RFP or supplied under any resulting award must be in accordance with the United States Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), 22 CFR §228. The cooperating countries for this RFP is Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, and Nigeria.

Offerors may not offer or supply any commodities or services that are manufactured or assembled in, shipped from, transported through, or otherwise involving any of the following countries: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Syria.

4.5 Eligibility: By submitting an offer in response to this RFP, the offeror certifies that it and its principal officers are not debarred, suspended, or otherwise considered ineligible for an award by the U.S. Government. CNFA will not award a contract to any firm that is debarred, suspended, or considered to be ineligible by the U.S. Government.

Annex 5: Amendment 1: Extend Application Deadline

In order to ensure a more thorough and complete solicitation process, the deadline for submissions has been extended to Monday, August 17th 2020 at 5pm EST. This is an amendment from the original deadline of August, 7th 2020.

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