The Healthy Caribbean Coalition (HCC) is seeking a consultant to undertake a mapping of the Caribbean food and beverage industry with a focus on key actors in Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. The Terms of Reference for the consultancy is below or can be downloaded here.
Interested and qualified candidates are requested to submit a Cover Letter and CV to the HCC via email (email@example.com) with the subject: HCC Food and Beverage Industry Mapping. The deadline for submissions is Friday August 24th, 2018.
TERMS OF REFERENCE
MAPPING OF CARIBBEAN FOOD AND BEVERAGE INDUSTRY
1.1 General Background
The HCC was formed in 2008, arising from the 2007 Declaration of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) on non-communicable diseases (NCDs). The HCC is a registered not-for-profit regional network and alliance of over 100 NCD-focused civil society organisations (CSOs). The HCC works closely in collaboration with government, private enterprise, academia, and international partners, to leverage the power of civil society by strengthening and supporting its membership to implement programmes aimed at reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with NCDs. The HCC 2017-2021 Strategic Plan is underpinned by five strategic pillars: advocacy, accountability, capacity building, communication and sustainability. These pillars drive the work of the organisation nationally, regionally and globally.
1.2 Specific Background
Childhood obesity is a major challenge facing our region with up to 1 in 3 children being overweight or obese. The Caribbean has some of the highest adult obesity rates in the world and no country as yet has been successful in halting or reversing this trend. In response to the problem the HCC developed a Civil Society Action Plan 2017-2021: Prevention Childhood Obesity in the Caribbean (CSAP). The goal of the CSAP is to halt the increase in childhood obesity by 2025 through improved development and implementation by CARICOM countries of policies, and/or legislation, and/ or regulations to prevent childhood obesity, by 2021. The overall expected outcome of the plan is strengthened contribution of Caribbean civil society to the development, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of national and regional policies, legislation, regulations, programmes, and interventions related to childhood obesity prevention by 2021.
The CSAP covers seven priority areas: trade and fiscal policy; nutrition literacy; marketing of healthy and unhealthy foods and beverages to children; school – and community-based interventions; resource mobilisation; and strategic planning, monitoring, and evaluation. The key policy asks are: SSB taxation; mandatory front of package labeling; enacting legislation related to The International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes; banning the marketing of unhealthy foods to children; banning the sale and marketing of unhealthy foods in government schools; and mandatory physical education in schools.
The consumption of unhealthy processed and ultra-processed foods and beverages is the primary driver of the obesity epidemic. There are a number of factors which contribute to this problem by creating obesogenic environments which are conducive to excess energy consumption. The Caribbean and other SIDS have experienced tremendous trade liberalization which has influenced the food systems in many countries towards increased availability and accessibility of processed food and greater consumption of foods high in fat, sugars and salt. In the Caribbean, half of CARICOM countries import more than 80% of what they consume (processed foods are the top five food imports in the region) fueling dramatic changes in diet away from unprocessed or minimally processed foods and contributing to an ‘epidemic’ of obesity and diet-related NCDs.
In growing recognition of the commercial determinants of health, the processed food and beverage industry has been strongly implicated as a major driver of unhealthy diets. This is particularly evident in developing countries where multinational food corporations are aggressively targeting these emerging markets with a view to expanding profit margins as developed markets contract. A better understanding of the domestic and international processed food and beverage industry actors in the region, their product lines and emerging corporate political activities to undermine public health initiatives, will provide advocates with the information needed to tailor and target their advocacy efforts.
This work directly supports and complements existing HCC initiatives being implemented under the CSAP.
2 OBJECTIVES AND ACTIVITIES
The objective of this consultancy is to undertake a mapping of the Caribbean food and beverage industry with a focus on key actors in Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.
The specific objectives of the consultancy are to:
a. Create a database of the key actors in the food and beverage sector and their primary unhealthy processed and ultra-processed foods and beverages [by category] as defined by the PAHO Nutrient Profile.
a. Identify that subset that target children and adolescents.
b. Identify those that are, or claim to be shifting their business model towards more responsible practices including product reformulation and responsible marketing.
c. Document Sources of Information (including searches undertaken) to allow for ongoing updating of database document.
b. Identify linkages/partnerships that the food and beverage industry have with other entities at the national, regional and global levels:
a. With regional and global food and beverage manufactures including alliances of manufacturers such as the International Food and Beverage Alliance
b. With other private sector actors outside of the food and beverage industry
c. With the public sector including ministries (e.g. funding of programmes) and policymakers (e.g. campaign funding).
d. With the civil society organisations including academia (e.g. funding of programmes or initiatives and funding of research).
c. Map corporate political activity or industry interference i.e. the practices of food and beverage industry actors engaging in activities aimed at negatively influencing and/or interfering with advocacy and policymaking.
a. Identify a few selected case studies if they exist.
d. Identify and discuss challenges in engaging with this sector; strategies (including regulation) and opportunities to engage and encourage the food and beverage industry to shift towards the production and marketing of healthier foods and beverages (reference the PAHO Nutrient Profile Model); discuss and propose tools and mechanisms to safeguard nutrition policies and programmes from opposing actors.
a. Identify a few case studies including the National Food Industry Task Force in Jamaica; the Barbados National NCD Commission; and any emerging practices.
e. Identify mechanisms that could help in increasing the transparency, monitoring and accountability of the food and beverage industry with regard to its corporate political activity.
2.2 Activities and tasks
The specific activities and selected tasks are listed below.
1. Meet with HCC Executive Director and team to review the consultancy.
2. Create draft and final database template for approval.
3. Create Mapping Report template for approval – see guidance below:
a. Executive Summary
e. Database of Key Actors/ and products
f. Food and Beverage Industry Relationships
g. Industry Interference (corporate political activities)
h. Challenges, Strategies and Opportunities around engaging with the food industry
i. Discuss and propose tools and mechanisms to safeguard nutrition policies and programmes from opposing actors
j. Conclusions and Recommendations.
4. Prepare first draft of the Mapping Report and submit to HCC for approval.
5. Finalise the Mapping Report and submit to the HCC.
6. Work with the graphic artist on the layout and design.
3 INDICATIVE TIMELINES
August – October 2018 (18.5d over this period)
1. Excel Database of Primary Food and Beverage Industry actors
2. Draft Mapping Report
3. Final Mapping Report
5 CONSULTANT REQUIREMENTS
5.1 Relevant work experience/ specific skills and knowledge
● Must be an individual not an organisation
● 5+ years experiencing working in public health with strong understanding of policy and a focus on nutrition policy.
● Experience working with conflict of interest within the context of the food and beverage sector in the Caribbean or regionally or globally.
● Experience working with private sector organisations, public sector and the civil society sector
● Report preparation (strong writing skills)
● Experience working with conflict of interest within the context of tobacco control in the Caribbean or regionally or globally would be an asset.