Lesotho + 6 more

WFP Contribution to Market Development and Food Systems in Southern Africa: Thematic Evaluation (January 2018 to March 2021)

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Evaluation and Lessons Learned
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Introduction

  1. These Terms of Reference (TOR) are for a thematic evaluation of WFP Supply chain and Market development activities in six selected countries in Southern Africa (Lesotho, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi and Tanzania). This evaluation is commissioned by WFP Regional Bureau Johannesburg (hereafter RBJ) and will cover the period from January 2018 to March 2021. The evaluation will take place from January to July 2021.

  2. With close to 60 years of experience in delivering food assistance to the most remote and difficulty places in the world, WFP has extensive expertise in optimizing supply chains to ensure food reaches the most in need. Whether complexities are due to natural conditions (mountainous and difficult places to reach e.g. Lesotho] or conflict areas with access and security issues (e.g. DR Congo), WFP supply chain expertise enables the agency to get assistance where it is needed. When this expertise is applied to strengthening local markets and food systems to enable provision of food assistance through Cash-Based Transfers (CBT) or to strengthening capacities of national institutions and infrastructure, there is potential for WFP to not only meet food and nutrition needs of targeted people, but also contribute to development of local markets and economies and supporting governments to strengthen national food systems as well as social protection systems. However, in some of the areas where WFP implements food assistance interventions, the markets are usually weak and fragmented. In this regard, one of WFP Supply Chain’s vision is to help create sustainable markets required to achieve zero hunger by removing market inefficiencies to improve Price, Quality & Service. Working with market actors and implementing market development and systems strengthening activities provides an opportunity for WFP to contribute to development of local economies while achieving its primary objective of providing food assistance to vulnerable populations.

  3. Market development activities include training of retailers, issuing WFP contracts that carry some security that can be used to access credit facilities to enhance inventory management and cash flow; enhancing relationships with Banks to offer financial literacy and business skills trainings; cash injection into the local economies; provision of WFP contracts where retailers have contractual obligation to comply with national Tax and appropriate levies which can contribute to enhancing government tax collection; supporting formation of buying clubs where appropriate; supporting rehabilitation of national supply chain infrastructures and capacitating efficient functioning of such infrastructure1 . (see section 3.2.8 for details). These market development activities, which are led by WFP Supply chain teams at the country offices and implemented with other functions including programme and with support of RB (and HQ where applicable) are the subject of this evaluation.

  4. Definitions For the purposes of this evaluation, the following are the key working definitions:
    • Market Functionality is assessed along seven dimensions: availability, price, trader stock capacity, supply chain resilience, competition, quality and instore infrastructure. Two additional dimensions that relate to implementation of WFP interventions are Service and access/protection [see MF reports for selected countries]
    • Market efficiency is defined by the extent to which a market is functional along the seven dimensions
    • Market development activities (MDAs) are any interventions intended to addressed/improve market functionality along any of the seven dimensions.
    • National Supply Chain infrastructure refers to network of physical, informational, institutional and human resources involved in distribution of goods and services within a country
    • Food System is a complex web of activities involving food production, processing, transport, and consumption. Issues concerning the food system include the governance and economics of food production, its sustainability, the degree to which we waste food, how food production affects the natural environment and the impact of food on individual and population health. See Annex 11 for a conceptual framework of food system and its drivers.

  5. These TOR were prepared by RB based on document review and consultation with stakeholders and following the WFP standard template for decentralised evaluations. This being an innovative thematic evaluation across several countries, the purpose of the TOR is threefold. First, to provide pertinent background information about Supply chain market development activities across the 6 case study countries; Second, to provide key information to the evaluators and guide them throughout the evaluation process; and third to provide key information to stakeholders about the evaluation process, steps and deliverables and their role in the process.