Calls for expressions of interest

AO 231258

Pedagogical support services in the development and digitalisation of COLEAD’s training offer and its programmes

Post date: 10/01/2023

Please complete the application form below:

Terms of Reference

1. Title of contract

Pedagogical support services in the development and digitalisation of COLEAD’s training offer and its programmes.
Ref: COLEAD/AO/231258

2. Location

The required interventions will mainly be carried out at the provider’s premises. However, travel to partner countries may be necessary. Depending on the case, the experts could be invited to visit the different COLEAD offices if necessary (Brussels, Rungis, Nairobi, etc.).

3. Main object (CPV code)

Agri-food sectors

4. General address of the contracting authority

5 rue de la Corderie
94586 RUNGIS Cedex

5. Publication of detailed Contract Notice

Internet address of the contracting authority:

6. Procedure

The publication of this Contract Notice launches the first phase of the procedure and is intended to allow candidates to express their interest in bidding. An initial evaluation based on an analysis of the expressions of interest will result in the establishment of a shortlist of candidates deemed suitable to submit tenders.

Stages of the procedure:
Phase 1

  1. Publication of the Contract Notice and submission by candidates of their expression of interest
  2. Establishment of the longlist
  3. Pre-selection based on the application file
  4. Establishment of the shortlist

Phase 2

  1. Launching of the call for tenders (sending of tender documents to short-listed candidates)
  2. Selection based on the files provided by those tendering
  3. Establishment of framework contracts with the selected tenderers

The service providers selected following the consultation will be offered a framework contract, specifying a maximum daily remuneration rate per proposed expert. This rate of remuneration may differ from the financial proposal made by the tenderer.

In general, the services of the successful tenderers may start from the day of the signature of the framework contract. The interventions of the successful tenderers may extend until the full consumption of the budget allocated.

7. Background information

COLEAD is a non-profit interprofessional association created in 1973. Its purpose is to facilitate and implement all actions allowing, directly and/or indirectly, to increase the contribution of the agricultural sector, and horticulture in particular, to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

From an operational perspective, COLEAD is organised into several departments corresponding to COLEAD’s internal areas of expertise: Technical Assistance, Training, Research and Innovation Brokerage, Market Insights, Information and Communication, Regulation and Standards, Access to Finance, and Networking and Alliances.

Fit for Market SPS: Strengthening sanitary and phytosanitary systems in the ACP horticultural sector
In December 2018, the European Commission (EC) and COLEAD signed a four-year grant contract for the programme “FFM SPS: Strengthening Sanitary and Phytosanitary Systems in the ACP Horticultural Sector” (CRIS 401-899), with a total budget of €15 million, funded by the 11th European Development Fund (EDF). It is part of the EU’s support to medium and long-term policies aimed at strengthening productive capacities, stimulating innovation and improving the sustainability and competitiveness of the ACP private sector.

The overall objective of the programme is to contribute to poverty reduction, improve food security and safety, and ensure inclusive and sustainable growth by strengthening the ACP agri-food export sector. The specific objective of the programme is to ensure that small producers, farmers’ groups and organisations and ACP MSMEs have access to international and domestic fruit and vegetable markets in a sustainable framework, by helping them to take account of the requirements of these markets, particularly with regard to food safety.

The implementation of this programme aims at building capacity in horticultural safety and plant health both at the level of private sector actors (small producers, farmer groups and organisations, MSMEs, etc.) and at the level of competent authorities. To this end, COLEAD assists programme beneficiaries in meeting market (regulatory) requirements, including those related to food safety. In addition, COLEAD studies the destination markets for ACP fruit and vegetables, in particular local and regional ACP markets, to better understand their quality and quantity.

Fit for Market Plus: Mitigating the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic by strengthening the sustainability of the ACP horticultural sector
In November 2021, the EC and COLEAD signed a five-year grant contract, “Fit For Market Plus – Mitigating the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic by strengthening the sustainability of the ACP horticultural sector ” (EDF/2021/425-734) with a total budget of €25 million funded by the European Union (EU) at the request of the Organisation of ACP States (OACPS) through the 11th EDF.

Fit For Market Plus (FFM+) provides support to the horticultural sector in OACPS member countries. It aims to maintain and improve the capacity of smallholders, farmer groups and horticultural MSMEs to access national, regional and international markets through the progressive and sustainable intensification of the horticultural sector, while adapting to the changes in their operating environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the changing climate.

FFM+ has been designed and will be implemented in line with FFM programmes and the results of the COLEAD COVID-19 Action Plan implemented from March 2020. FFM+ support has been designed to contribute to the transition of ACP agriculture towards a more sustainable food and agricultural system, integrating the priority areas of action foreseen by the Farm to Fork strategy of the EU Green Pact.

FFM+ will in particular :

  • Strengthen the capacity of smallholders, farmer groups and horticultural MSMEs to access national, regional and international markets by complying with regulatory and trade requirements within a sustainable framework, while adapting to changes in their operating environment due to COVID-19;
  • Ensure that these stakeholders have the skills and business tools to continue and improve their activities by building their capacity to manage change and facilitating their access to finance;
  • Exploit market opportunities resulting from the disruption of COVID-19, and monitor market access and competitiveness conditions and requirements;
  • Strengthen the capacity of the relevant authorities in ACP countries to support the agri-food sector;
  • Encourage technical innovation and research to generate the knowledge, skills and technologies needed to facilitate the transition of ACP horticulture to more sustainable food systems;
  • Seek and facilitate increased impact of its activities through partnerships.

FFM SPS and FFM+ are part of the annual intra-ACP programme of cooperation between the EU and the OACPS. The expected outcomes of FFM SPS and FFM+ are complementary and integrated into an overall COLEAD implementation framework aimed at building and strengthening capacity at national and regional levels to ensure effective and efficient national SPS systems for the ACP horticultural industry. The FFM+ programme is designed to specifically address the impacts of COVID-19 through specific short and medium term actions to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the ACP agri-food sector.

Other programmes managed and implemented by COLEAD (at the time of launching this contract)
As part of the diversification of its funding sources, COLEAD is implementing other national or multinational programmes funded by different donors. Thus, in addition to the FFM Plus and FFM SPS programmes, COLEAD is also currently involved in the implementation of several technical assistance programmes in line with the association’s mission:

  • Strengthening the Phytosanitary Control and Certification System in Guinea” (STDF/PG/498) funded by the Standards and Trade Development Facility (FANDC – STDF).
  • “NExT Kenya: Enhancing Kenyan Horticultural Export” (CRIS 414-898) funded by the EU aims to increase the contribution of the Kenyan horticultural sector to household incomes and improve food security, food safety and nutrition by strengthening the resilience, integration and sustainability of the country’s horticultural value chains.
  • “AGRINFO – Towards a fair, healthy and environmentally friendly food system: addressing compliance with EU regulatory and non-regulatory measures” (FOOD 2021/427-777), funded by the EC for a total budget of EUR 7 million. The AGRINFO programme focuses on identifying and monitoring EU policies, regulatory and non-regulatory measures, standards and market trends that have a potential impact on competitiveness, market access and trade dynamics on national, regional,
  • international levels for agricultural operators in partner countries and in the EU.

  • “DEFIA: Support for the agro-ecological transition of the pineapple sector through the implementation of the Programme for the Development of Entrepreneurship in Agricultural Sectors” This programme, financed by ENABEL, aims to enable operators in the pineapple value chain in Benin to begin a gradual transition to agro-ecology, while meeting the requirements of local, regional and international markets.

The list of other programmes/projects is not exhaustive. Indeed, COLEAD is involved in the implementation of several national and regional technical assistance programmes/projects, in partnership with donors working towards inclusive and sustainable agri-food production and trade. Please refer to the COLEAD website to learn more about its interventions.

EU Green Deal
The Green Deal aims to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050 and proposes an action plan to boost resource efficiency, shift to a clean and circular economy, restore biodiversity and reduce pollution. It will be implemented through a wide range of policies and instruments, and legislative and non-legislative measures.

The Farm to Fork strategy promotes a fair, healthy and environmentally friendly food system and recognises that food and agriculture are important drivers of climate change and environmental degradation. The strategy aims to reduce the environmental and climate footprint of the EU food system, reverse the loss of biodiversity, ensure food security, reduce reliance on pesticides and over-fertilisation, and develop organic farming. It aims to lead a global transition to competitive sustainability from farm to table.

The support provided to EU farmers by the CAP will contribute to this transition, notably through the following measures:

  • Capping and better targeting of income support to farmers who need it and to achieving the green ambition;
  • A significant funding stream for new ‘eco-regimes’ that encourage sustainable practices;
  • Investments, advisory services and support for practices to reduce the use of pesticides ;
  • A favourable regulatory environment that will (inter alia) facilitate the placing on the market of organic pesticides; implement strict phytosanitary rules to reinforce vigilance on imports; provide the necessary legal framework to support the transition to organic farming.

The EU aims to foster a global transition towards sustainable agri-food systems, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It will do this by including a chapter on sustainability in all EU bilateral trade agreements. This will be accompanied by enhanced cooperation with third countries on pesticide use, animal welfare and antimicrobial resistance. The EU also intends to play a leading role in the development of international standards on sustainability and methods for calculating the ecological footprint. Hence the pressure on importers to also comply with relevant EU environmental standards in order to be allowed on the European market.

Problems to be solved – market justification
The compliance of agri-food production (with particular emphasis on the plant sectors, including horticultural sectors), on the one hand, with regulatory requirements (whether local or European) and, on the other hand, with the growing commercial requirements of regional and international markets, in terms of sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) quality, and sustainability (environmental and social aspects, with particular emphasis on the changes brought about by the implementation of regulatory provisions arising from the European Green Deal), most often requires an in-depth reorganisation of the practices of operators in the partner countries.

This reorganisation implies in particular the training of their personnel (managers, technical managers and workers), as well as the external producers supplying them.
The support services (public or private) must strengthen their capacities, as the case may be, in terms of advice, inspection and training, so as to be able to offer quality services to agricultural operators (with particular emphasis on operators in the plant sectors, including horticultural sectors).

In order to meet the needs of operators and support services in terms of capacity building and monitoring of their activities (and results), COLEAD must also have specific, relevant and adapted tools on topics related to sanitary and phytosanitary quality, sustainable production systems (including primary processing), and responsible social practices.

These tools contribute, among other things, to providing quality expertise to operators and support services.

8. Market description

Type of contract
This contract concerns the provision of support services for the technical implementation of all ongoing and future COLEAD programmes.

All successful tenderers will be offered a framework contract, which will specify the names of the selected experts and the maximum daily fee per expert. In some cases, and following the evaluation of the proposed CVs, the fees mentioned in the contract may differ from the fees proposed in the tenderer’s financial offer.

The objective of this call for tender is to create a pool of experts with the required expertise, as described in “Type of activities”, who can be mobilised by the COLEAD technical team. The services will therefore be requested on an as-needed basis and through ordering letters specifying the terms of the services.

It is important to note that in the context of this tender, although the signing of a framework contract is a prerequisite for working with COLEAD, this does not guarantee that all service providers will be invited to carry out an assignment.

Overall market objective
The services provided by the selected bidders will contribute to the development of digital and pedagogical training tools, programmes and materials on the different intervention themes. They will also contribute to the implementation of pedagogical support on training methodologies. These different services will serve to strengthen the capacities of the different audiences targeted by COLEAD in order to ensure the dissemination of good practices throughout the agricultural value chains (with a particular emphasis on plant value chains, including horticulture), and thus to perpetuate the transfer of skills in face-to-face and digital formats.

Principles of intervention
In line with previous programmes, the intervention logic of COLEAD’s programmes is based on the expression of requests from enterprises or producer groups in partner countries, but also from intermediate support structures – whether public or private – that are actively involved in the process of compliance and development of the sectors concerned (service providers, professional organisations, training centres, inspection services, etc.).

It also adopts the following modalities and principles of action that have contributed to their success:

  • Local ownership;
  • No substitution of local stakeholders;
  • Investment in local expertise and human resources ;
  • Pooling of problems / economies of scale / intra-regional approach favoured ;
  • Demand-driven approach ;
  • A participatory approach and cost sharing;
  • South-South cooperation ;
  • Technical, scientific and financial partnerships to avoid duplication, optimise synergies and increase impact;
  • A cross-cutting framework on youth and women.

COLEAD will preferably use service providers whose consultants are based in the partner countries1, with a particular focus on ACP countries, from which the beneficiaries of the programmes request support, in order to ensure that the characteristics of the operators concerned and their environment are taken into account in a timely and efficient manner. This concern for the increasing involvement of local expertise is an integral part of COLEAD’s intervention logic.

Description of the interventions
The service providers will be able to provide all or part of the services in the fields of sanitary and phytosanitary quality, sustainable agricultural practice systems, responsible social practices and in particular on the following themes:

  • Food safety (hygiene, risk analysis, traceability, quality management systems, self-checking, etc.);
  • Plant health (sanitary and phytosanitary risk assessment, surveillance, inspection, sampling, organisation and management of a laboratory, etc.);
  • Agricultural production and processing (Crop Protection, Diagnostic Techniques, Integrated Pest Management, Biological Control, Safe Use of Pesticides and compliance with MRLs, Quarantine Pests, Organic Agriculture, etc.);
  • Environmental management (soil, water, waste, energy, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, etc.) );
  • Respect for the person and professional development (human rights, labour relations and conditions, fair trade, ethics, etc.) ;
  • Management and Development of Organisations (Market Access, Accounting and Financial Management, Human Resources Management, Business Negotiation, Data Management, etc.);
  • Sustainable production and trade (Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainable Agriculture, Alternative Production and Pest Management, etc.);
  • Training methodologies (Professional training, Coaching, Evaluation, etc.) ;
  • Any other theme or new issue that could help bring agricultural production (with particular emphasis on crop production, including horticulture) in partner countries into compliance with local, regional or international trade regulations and constraints.

Beneficiaries / target groups
The partner-beneficiaries/target audiences are the actors of the agricultural sectors, i.e.: directors and technical managers of enterprises, extension workers of small producers’ support structures, agents of intermediary structures of the agricultural sector, public and private service providers and agents of public services with a particular focus on the directorates and agents of the competent authorities in terms of inspection, control and certification, e.g.: national inspection services and National Plant Protection Organisations (NPPOs), etc.

Type of activities
The planned activities will be carried out taking into account the digital transformation process at COLEAD and that of the beneficiaries/partners of its programmes. Thus, the planned activities can be carried out either face-to-face, or totally at a distance using the digital tools at disposal, or in a hybrid way with a face-to-face part and another part at a distance.

The actions to be organised under this call for tenders will include the following aspects:
Development of training programmes and tools – All themes
Teaching material

  • Develop methodologies and training programmes aimed at strengthening the capacities of value chain operators in a sustainable way, to change their behaviour in depth, to internalise skills in organisations;
  • Editing and updating training programmes;
  • Design and develop specific training activities for the COLEAD e-learning platform (pedagogical organisation of trajectories, evaluation modules, scripting, etc.) ) ;
  • To improve the training offer in line with the COLEAD training and competence framework;
  • Develop training and animation tools adapted to the target audiences for which they are intended, both in content and in form (educational animation, brochure, educational guide, educational video, technical manual, etc.).

Digital support

  • Creating, editing, correcting and updating self-learning courses on the COLEAD digital training platform based on training manuals or other resources from technical experts (e.g. interactive learning content design and scripting using Articulate 360);
  • To assist in the transposition of training programmes from a face-to-face to a distance format;
  • Participate in the development of new distance learning programmes;
  • To improve the COLEAD e-learning platform by optimising the settings of the different Moodle features.

Implementation of training on pedagogical aspects – Training methodologies
Teaching material

  • Implementing training courses as an expert trainer (organisation and animation), on the pedagogical aspects – in addition to the technical aspects of the courses;
  • Implement capacity building for trainers in the form of training or coaching.

Digital support

  • Participate in the animation of a distance learning course in order to provide digital support through various digital tools (Miro, Zoom, H5P…);
  • Implement capacity building for trainers on the digital tools needed to deliver distance learning.

Means Required
The technical skills required will depend on the type of assignment and will be defined on a case-by-case basis. In general, the expert must demonstrate :

  • specific knowledge in one or more of the “Type of activities” described.
  • professional experience in one or more of the “Type of activities” described.

Knowledge of the agricultural sector and the socio-cultural context in partner countries, with a particular emphasis on ACP countries, is an asset.
The combination of expertise in several activities is also considered an asset (e.g. combined pedagogy and digitalisation: having expertise in pedagogy of digital courses on Moodle).

Providers must be fluent (both orally and in writing) in French or English.
Knowledge of other languages spoken in partner countries is considered an asset and should be highlighted (e.g. Dutch, Portuguese, Swahili, etc.).

1 Partner countries are defined as low-income, lower-middle-income and upper-middle-income economies, categorised according to the DAC list of ODA recipients.

9. Budget

The maximum value of this Contract Notice is € 600,000.

10. Provisional timetable

Date of publication of this Contract Notice: 10/01/2023
Deadline for receipt of applications (expressions of interest): 09/02/2023
Deadline for publication of the shortlist: 20/02/2023
Expected date for sending invitations to tenders: 22/02/2023
Deadline for submission of tenders: 13/04/2023
Date of notification to the successful bidders: 22/05/2023
Expected start date of the contract: (from) from the date of signature by the 2 contracting parties
The final schedule will be included in the tender documents.

11. Eligibility

Participation is open, under equal conditions, to all natural persons and legal entities (participating individually or in a consortium of bidders) who are nationals of the ACP and EU States and/or listed in Annex 1 to this document. A consortium may be a permanent group with legal status or an informal group created for the purpose of a specific call for tenders. All the members of a consortium (i.e. the lead partner and all other partners) are jointly and severally liable to the contracting authority.

A check will be carried out to ensure that none of the candidate bidders appears on any of the Financial Sanctions Lists (lists designating persons, groups or entities subject to financial sanctions by the United Nations, the EU and France).

The participation of an ineligible natural person or legal entity will result in the automatic exclusion of the application concerned. If this ineligible person is part of a consortium, the application of the entire consortium will be excluded.

12. Prohibition on pre-selected candidates forming groups

Any tenders received from tenderers allied with firms other than those mentioned in the shortlisted application forms will be excluded from the tender procedure. Shortlisted candidates may neither associate nor conclude mutual subcontracting agreements in the context of the contract in question. No more associations will be allowed after the shortlist has been established.

13. Criteria for selecting applications

Selection criteria relating to the technical and professional capacity of the bidder will be applied to candidates. In the case of an application submitted by a consortium, these criteria will apply to the whole consortium.

These criteria ensure that the candidate (or the consortium as a whole) has sufficient skills and experience to perform the contract.

The correct observance of the instructions for sending the application file will also be considered in the evaluation.

14. Application form

The bidder should indicate an interest in participating in the call for tenders by applying. If the candidate is pre-selected, the name of the structure indicated on the application file will be used in the shortlist. No further changes (name, consortium or other) will be allowed.
The form is available in English and French, and should be completed in one of these languages.
It includes the following data:

  • General information on the applicant
  • The application file:
    • 1 brief description of one or more recent assignments (within the previous 3 years) related to the means required to illustrate your competence in one or more areas of expertise described in the terms of reference (4000 characters maximum, spaces included).
    • the names of up to 3 experts who technically meet the expertise requirements and a brief description of their respective skills and experience.
    • at least one professional reference with an email address.

The application must be received by COLEAD no later than Thursday, February 09th, 2023.

15. Communication with COLEAD

If you have any questions regarding this Contract Notice or your application, please email .
Be sure to include Contract Notice reference COLEAD/AO/231258 in the title of your email when communicating with COLEAD.

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