Call for proposals to develop biofortified food products for school age children and strategic partnerships in Jaipur, Rajasthan

  • Location:
  • Salary:
    negotiable / YEAR
  • Job type:
    FULL_TIME
  • Posted:
    4 months ago
  • Category:
    Partnership and Resource Mobilization, Youth and Adolescence
  • Deadline:
    17/11/2023

JOB DESCRIPTION

Background

At HarvestPlus, we believe that hidden hunger should not be inevitable for the people most at risk. We break down silos between agriculture and nutrition to develop creative solutions to combat hidden hunger. Our food-based approach targets some of the most vulnerable populations around the world. HarvestPlus, and its CGIAR partners, breed crops with naturally higher levels of key micronutrients, using a process called biofortification, as well as other beneficial agricultural traits, such as climate resilience, higher yields, disease resistance, and pest tolerance. This approach complements other nutrition interventions, and is evidence-based, cost-effective, and sustainable. We work across the entire value chain to develop and deliver nutrient-enriched seeds, grains, and foods to the people who need it most, via a large collection of innovative and traditional supply chain activities. HarvestPlus is a program of the International Food Policy Research Institute, a research center of the CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food secure future. Its science is carried out by its 15 research centers in collaboration with hundreds of partner organizations. To learn more about HarvestPlus, visit our home page here.

Nutri-Pathshala Model

The Nutri Pathshala program focuses on incorporating biofortified grians into the school feeding program in India. Biofortification is a process that increases the nutrient content of food crops through conventional breeding techniques or modern biotechnology. In this case, Iron Pearl Millet and Zinc Wheat are being promoted. Micronutrient deficiency, also known as hidden hunger, is a prevalent issue among school-age children in India. It can have long-lsating effects on their cognitive and physical development. By introducing biofortified grains like Iron Pearl Millet and Zinc Wheat into school meals, the Nutri Pathshala initiative aims to address this problem.

These biofortified grains have higher levels of essential micronutrients such as iron and zinc. Iron is crucial for the production of red blood cells and overall growth, while zinc is important for immune function and cognitive development. The Nutri Pathshala program works in collaboration with state governments, schools, and local communities to ensure the successful implementation of nutrient rich diets in the school feeding program. It not only provides nutritious meals but also promotes awareness about the importance of a balanced diet and healthy eating habits. Through the use of biofortified grains in school meals, the Nutri Pathshala program intends to improve the overall health and well-being of school-age children.

Biofortification in India

India is home to some 1.3 billion people. In India, 30% of adult males, 45% of adult females, 80% of pregnant females, and 60% of children are iron deficient. Meanwhile, some 300 million Indians (22% of the population) are deficient in zinc, including 44% of all Indian children under the age of five.

Nationally, pearl millet is consumed by 6-7% of households in India but reaches a much higher percentage in six states, i.e. Rajasthan, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Rajasthan. Gujarat, Haryana, and Rajasthan account for 90% of pearl millet production and consumption. Other states where the crop is often consumed include Maharashtra and Karnataka. Consumption of pearl millet is highest in the state of Rajasthan, at 60 grams per day on average. Wheat is widely consumed across all states in India with an average consumption of 138 grams per day, accounting for 20% of daily caloric intake. Outside of southern India, average consumption is even higher. Major wheat cultivation and production hubs are found in Rajasthan, Bihar, and Punjab.

Objective of the RFP

The main objective of the RFP is to identify an organization/JV/Consortiums (hereafter referred to as consultant) that will primarily work to achieve the following:

  1. Supply the biofortified products to Anganwadi and schools as an add on to Mid-Day-Meal scheme: The consultant will obtain biofortified grains (IPM and ZW) from FPCs and community institutions. These grains will be used to produce laddus, cookies, biscuits, and other biofortified food products for school-age children. The agency will distribute these products to specific schools and Anganwadi centers, in close coordination with district administrations. As these are food products, the agency will strictly follow all regulations and obtain the necessary licenses.
  2. Develop Nutri Pathshala: Under the HaNSA project, the consultant will develop Nutri Pathshala with support from the school management committee and government stakeholders in the schools and Anganwadi where the biofortified food products are being supplied.
  3. Capacity building: The consultant will provide training to self-help group (SHG) and farmers’ producer company (FPC) members, as well as to school children and other involved stakeholders, on the concepts of biofortification and Nutri-Pathshala. The aim is to raise awareness about the importance of nutrition and hygenic food practices. Additionally, training will be provided to SHGs/FPCs on food product development and processing.
  4. Partnership and Linkages: The consultant will identify and facilitate partnerships with public and private organizations to connect finished products to Anganwadi and primary schools in specific areas.
  5. Reporting, Monitoring and Evaluation: The agency will also be responsible for collecting data, sharing progress reports, and sharing the analysis of data to showcase the progress and outcomes thus achieved. This includes base line, end line, and impact report as well.

Outputs

  • Improved micronutrient intake amongst students
  • Emergency of SHGs/FPCs as micro-entrepreneurs in food processing
  • Creating a sustainable value chain with farmers as producers, SHGs as processors, and schools as buyers
  • Creating awareness in Rajasthan for biofortified food products; increased demand

Scope of Activities

Stage 1:

Developing product to supply biofortified add-on snacks to selected Anganwadi and schools in Jaipur district, Rajasthan. This will involve working closely with the HarvestPlus team. The consultant will obtain permission from the relevant authorities to distribute biofortified biscuits and cookies to the respective schools and Anganwadi centers.

Stage 2:

Supply of biofortified laddus, cookies, biscuits, nutri-drinks, etc. to 1,000 students in selected Anganwadi/schools for a period of 3 months. Also implement the HaNSA program in those Anganwadi and schools, working closely with the district ICDS and MDM teams in Rajasthan. The add-on snacks will be supplied to selected Anganwadi and schools for a total of 78 days within the 3 month period.

Stage 3:

Provide training and capacity building activities for government stakeholders, school children, parents, school management committees (SMCs), teachers, and other relevant stakeholders to implement HaNSA.

Stage 4:

Share the report daily, providing evidence of regular supply of biofortified add-on snacks to 1,000 children in selected Anganwadi and schools. Also share the baseline and end line report of all targeted children in close coordination with ICDS and MDM.

Stage 5:

Create an opportunity for high-level discussions with private and public sector stakeholders. This will allow us not only to have an impact on policy decisions, but also develop a plan for ending the program and ensuring its long-term sustainability throughout the assignment.

All the activities mentioned above will be carried out in Jaipur district, Rajasthan. The partner will ensure the implementation of these activities in close coordination with the district administration, ICDS department, and HarvestPlus.

Timeline

Deliverable Deadline
Deadline to submit any questions November 10, 2023
Technical and financial proposal submission November 17, 2023
Presentation by shortlisted organizations November 25, 2023
Final response regarding selection of the executing agency November 30, 2023
Contracting process December 10, 2023

Please submit technical and financial proposals to the IFPRI website. In the event of any questions, you may email k.foley@cgiar.org.

This job has expired.