JOB: Dairy Value Chain Advisor at the Netherlands Development Organisation in Kenya





SNV Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV) is an international not-for-profit development organisation that provides capacity development services to nearly 2,000 organisations from the private sector, government and civil society in over 38 countries worldwide. SNV engages with stakeholders at different levels in local economies and agricultural value chains, with the objective to help enhance competitiveness, incomes and employment by inclusion of small and medium sized farmers and SMEs.

In the East & Southern African region, SNV operates in nine countries: Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

In Kenya, SNV focuses on horticulture, dairy and extensive livestock, water and sanitation and renewable energy (biogas). In the dairy sector SNV Kenya is implementing the Kenya Market-led Dairy Programme (KMDP).


The Kenya Market-led Dairy Programme (KMDP) is a 4.5 year programme funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The programme started 1st July 2012 and is implemented by SNV Netherlands Development Organisation in collaboration with stakeholders in the dairy industry.

The overall goal of KMDP is to contribute to the development of a vibrant dairy sector with beneficiaries across the value chain. KMDP acknowledges and appreciates that the dairy industry in Kenya is private sector driven. KMDP has two pillars also termed project objectives:

Objective 1: To increase efficiency, effectiveness and inclusiveness of the dairy value chain

Under this objective, the project works in a number of milk sheds with processors and farmers’ Collection and Bulking Enterprises (CBEs), willing to invest in training & extension and improved input and service provision. Currently SNV/KMDP collaborates with six processors and 15 CBEs in Meru/ Eastern, Central/Kinangop and North Rift and tries to stimulate design and implementation of more inclusive business models.

 Objective 2: To promote innovative models that address systemic issues in the sector

Under this objective SNV facilitates innovations in the sector that address systemic issues related to availability of feed/fodder, milk quality/Quality Based Payment systems, productivity, and skills development. SNV assists private and public sector in this Innovation Agenda, by helping to create linkages with international input/service providers and investors, organising international Missions, and by operating an Innovation Fund. Under this objective KMDP is also developing a project with medium and large scale dairy farmers and commercial fodder producers, with the aim of fast-track innovations and adoption of best practices, with spin-off to smallholder farmers and CBEs through promotion of business linkages, field days, demos and training.


For its activities in the North Rift and Meru/Eastern milk sheds, SNV has two vacancies for a Medior (Mid-Level) Dairy Value Chain Advisor. The Advisors will (a) lead and coordinate KMDP activities with CBEs (dairy Collection and Bulking Centers or dairy societies) and processors in the respective milk sheds and shall (b) assure coordination and synergy between the dairy value chain agenda and other dairy interventions and projects of KMDP in Meru/Eastern and North Rift.

One position exists at SNV’s office in Eldoret and the other in Nanyuki and shall have the following tasks and responsibilities:

(a) To lead the value chain agenda in the milk shed

This part of the job description implies that the Medior Dairy Value Chain Advisor is the account manager for all clients and stakeholders KMDP cooperates with in the milk shed, to strengthen the operations of farmers, farmer groups, CBEs and processors. The following tasks or activities are part of the account management duties:

  • To liaise with CBEs, processors, input suppliers and service providers and to develop, monitor and evaluate MOUs, Assignment Agreements, work plans and contracts between them and SNV.
  • To give guidance and coordinate the SNV team supporting the work plans  in the respective milk shed, consisting of (thematic) SNV advisors, local service providers (LCBs) and interns.
  • To advise upon and guide the operationalization of criteria for engagement with CBEs, processors and service providers/input suppliers.
  • To develop systemized approaches and arrangements for enhancing management/ governance capacity and service & extension models of CBEs, linking them to BDS service providers, training institutes, input suppliers and so on.
  • To strengthen CBEs to grow milk volumes & quality, profitability and deliver services to their members including extension services for increased productivity.
  • To develop intervention models to support commercialization of services including training & extension and commercialization of fodder production/supply chains.
  • To promote and coordinate value chain development and inclusive business linkages to build efficiency and quality in the supply chain, through strengthening linkages (a) between CBEs horizontally to achieve economies of scale in service delivery (including extension services) and marketing, (b) between CBEs and processors who are willing to invest in the supply chain, and (c) between CBEs and service providers & input suppliers for enhanced service and input delivery models.
  • To engage with processors who have strong interest in establishing a stable relationship with suppliers (CBEs) through supply chain development.

(b) To stimulate and pro-actively contribute to synergy with other dairy interventions in KMDP

This part of the job description is based on the notion that within KMDP and for strategic reasons, interventions take place at other levels/segments in the sector; not only within the predominantly smallholder dominated dairy value chain. These interventions are related to the work with Commercial Fodder Producers (CFPs) and commercialized medium and large scale dairy farmers, who are not directly embedded or incorporated in the smallholder-operated dairy value chain (CBEs/processors). SNV engages with these actors to fast track innovations, adoption of international best practice and efficiency in milk and fodder production, and to create spin-off and positive spillover to smallholder dairy keepers. Other interventions at sector level target DTI Naivasha, support to Practical Dairy Training Centers and pilots on Quality Based Milk Payment systems.

KMDP acknowledges the importance and the need to create synergy between these interventions and the smallholder value chain agenda. Hence, the need to develop synergy and strengthen linkages for spin-off and cross-fertilization between these more “strategic or systemic” interventions and the KMDP’s value chain agenda.

For the Medior Dairy Value Chain Advisors the following tasks or activities follow from this objective to create “synergy” at programme level:

  • To liaise frequently with the other KMDP Advisors and team members working on this “strategic or systemic” KMDP agenda, and to take lead – where possible and opportune – in coordination of the two agendas in the respective milk sheds.
  • To pro-actively identify opportunities for transfer of knowledge, technologies and best practice between the clients under the two KMDP agendas.
  • To help initiate and support models for enhanced input supply and service provision by large scale dairy farmers and commercial fodder producers to smallholders and CBEs, e.g. in the field of herd improvement (AI services/sales of heifers), sales of quality feed/fodder, agricultural contracting services and milk collection and bulking.
  • To actively engage with other team members in translating lessons learned from pilot projects under KMDP’s Innovation Fund for replication and up-scaling, in particular with a view to the work in the dairy value chain agenda.

(c) Reporting

The Medior Dairy Value Chain Advisors will report to the KMDP Dairy Value Chain Coordinator. The reporting will be as per the reporting formats that are part of the KMDP M&E system. He/she will (also) receive guidance and instructions on the required reporting from the M&E Coordinator.



  • Bachelor or Master degree or equivalent experience in the dairy industry in economic development, private sector development, business development in line with SNV’s mission and programs
  • At least 5 years of work experience in the dairy industry is required.

Skills & Knowledge

  • Experience and strong track record as a dairy value chain advisor in a private sector driven industry, with alongside donor-funded programmes supporting dairy value chain actors and market systems.
  • Experience in dealing with actors at all levels in the dairy value chain, including farmers, CBEs/dairy societies, processors, input suppliers and service providers.
  • Thorough understanding of the principal issues facing the dairy industry through experience with producer organizations/CBEs, processors, input suppliers, industry associations and government regulators.
  • Knowledge of/experience with at least two of the following themes: animal feed/ fodder management, AI, general animal husbandry, milk quality, training and extension.
  • Experienced in project management, proposal writing, project and work planning, monitoring & evaluation and reporting.
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written in English.

Personal attributes

Besides professional qualifications and work experience, the candidate shall be expected to be:

  • A self-motivated achiever with demonstrated ability for self-steering.
  • Strong in leadership and hands-on management skills.
  • Strong in report writing skills, work planning and organization.
  • Proficient in MS Word & excel at an advanced level.
  • In a position to demonstrate knowledge of relevant networks and networking skills.


Eldoret (one position) and Nanyuki (one position).


2 year (with possibility of extension subject to performance).


Please apply by clicking on the apply button and completing your application in our in-house recruitment system before 25th October, 2013. Please send your application letter and CV with reference to KMDP Value Chain Advisor (insert your preferred location) as subject.


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