Designing a programme for Safe and Sustainable Food Systems (SSFSs) for Liberia
Liberia’s food systems are characterised by missing linkages across entire value-chains and are affected by the lack of access to fundamental inputs and services, poor infrastructure and market failures. A food systems approach would provide a long-term strategic framework to tackle the outlined challenges and to support the Government to play its role in leading the agricultural transformation process. Under the European Union’s Multiannual Indicative Programme (MIP) 2021 to 2027, two Team Europe Initiatives (TEIs) are being pursued: “Safe and Sustainable Food Systems” (SSFSs) and “Forestry and Biodiversity”.
These initiatives merge the aspirations of the Liberian Government, through the Ministry of Agriculture, and those of the EU on jobs, growth and enhanced investments in the agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors. As part of the build-up towards the final design of the TEI’s, the European Union Delegation in Liberia commissioned a planning assignment to contribute to the design of a sustainable food systems programme. The assignment included an initial research phase and a consultative process where critical stakeholders in the agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors contributed to the design process.
How we approached the assignment
The assignment was delivered in two parts; an initial research phase (literature review and high-level consultations with some stakeholders) and a consultative process (sectoral dialogues) where critical public and private stakeholders in the agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors provided insights into the climate and ecosystem smart agricultural frameworks, the country’s policies and regulatory environment, the state of the food systems and the financial mechanisms, the various projects and programmes relative to food systems being implemented and the potential market opportunities. This approach, besides providing strategic insights from sector stakeholders, was also expected to enhance ownership by all the critical stakeholders. All the inputs from the research phase and the stakeholder’s dialogues contributed to the design of the climate and ecosystem smart food systems programme for the Ministry of Agriculture.
What the project has achieved:
The assignment delivered on the following:
- The identification of market opportunities across the food sectors
- Sources of climate smart financing for Liberia
- The theory of change for the proposed programme
- The intermediary results of the proposed programme
- The project management structure and the proposed budget