Vacancy: Programme Manager Cashew, Benin

The Organisation

The Beyond Beans Foundation is the implementation partner of international commodities trader ETG for sustainability programmes in cocoa, coffee, and cashew. We are currently working with 100,000 farmers from ETG’s supply chains across West and East Africa and Latin America, developing programmes with and for industrial clients.

In close cooperation with our sustainability teams in origin countries, commodity suppliers and programme partners, we support farmers to improve their farming practices towards a living income, help communities to tackle child labour, strive to empower women, support income diversification, and protect the natural environment with agroforestry and conservation efforts. 

Beyond Beans is based out of the Netherlands and our core programmes and activities are implemented through subsidiary foundations in Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Uganda, Togo and Ecuador. The Foundation’s rapidly expanding 100+ FTE operational team consists of a multidisciplinary team of managers and field staff with experience in a wide range of topics, from tackling child labour to climate-smart agroforestry and promoting gender equity. 

The Job

We are looking for a Programme Manager in Benin to oversee our local sustainability projects, mainly in cashew.

The Cashew Programme Manager will have a key role in the design, implementation, and Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E) of programmes that we are upscaling in the supply chains of local exporters from whom we buy sustainable cashew. This will mainly include sustainability certifications (e.g., Organic, Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance).

You will collaborate with our local commercial team to represent ETG-Beyond Beans towards our local farmer groups and partners, and you will be in close contact with our Programme Managers in The Netherlands as well as our larger cashew clients. Your role will encompass a broad range of activities, from monitoring certification, traceability and farm mapping to supplier relations, project development and partnership management.

As a new origin country for Beyond Beans, the role involves substantial opportunity for shaping Beyond Beans’ operations in Benin and putting your own stamp.

Key activities and responsibilities  

1. Building capacity to address gaps in (Organic, RA, etc.) certification compliance of suppliers  

  • Conducting needs assessments per IMS team on ‘certification readiness’ according to Beyond Beans’ expectations of upholding the organic and RA certification standards  
  • Coaching suppliers on best certification practices based on identified gaps in certification readiness.
  • Continuously monitoring of and reporting on uptake of recommended best practices by suppliers 
  • Communicating progress, projection on timelines and possible risks in suppliers’ certification processes to Beyond Beans management 

2. Supplier relation management and procurement support  

  • Maintain relations with our local Procurement team, exporters and farmer groups to facilitate project execution and procurement.  
  • Support annual contracting with local exporters and farmer groups on raw cashew nuts volume and sustainability premiums.  

3. Standardizing (Organic, RA) certification procedures, methods, and protocols for IMS teams  

  • Together with Beyond Beans M&E team, developing best practices on digitizing all certification related data collection and data management with suppliers 
  • Developing multi-level (farmer, IMS staff, etc.) training curriculums that meet certification requirements as well as internal standards, in close cooperation with BB certification teams
  • Developing all necessary approved and standardized documents for certification purposes, as well as training IMS teams on their use and implementation. Including but not limited to: 
    • Environmental Protection Plans 
    • Child Labor & Forced Labor Policy 
    • Health & Safety Guidelines 

4. Increasing understanding within Beyond Beans Benin and suppliers of the content as well as implications for implementation of new standards  

  • Generating a deep understanding with IMS teams of the organic and RA 2020 standard and developing a roadmap for implementation with suppliers 
  • Supporting and providing consultation on the development of internal standards, as well as developing implementation guidelines  

5. Design, implement and oversee our sustainability programmes, monitor progress of certification, mapping and traceability activities of our cashew suppliers and coordinate M&E digital data collection with field staff.  

  • Directly manage the certification and partnerships in the planning and execution of field activities (such as farmer trainings, certification audits, premium payments) in close collaboration with our local exporters. Ensure that certification requirements are being met.
  • Support local exporters in the design, budgeting, and execution of project operations.
  • Report to HQ on project indicators and with narrative reports for client/donor programmes.

The Team  

You will be working in our dynamic sustainability team that is spread over the Netherlands (Amstelveen), West and East Africa (Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Togo and Uganda). In Benin, you will be working with our Procurement team at our office and our local exporters, including their field staff. Internationally, you will be in contact with our head office team in Amstelveen, The Netherlands as well as other origin teams to collaborate and exchange knowledge.

Qualities we are looking for

  • A bachelor’s or master’s degree, preferably in Sustainable Agriculture, International Development, or a related field.
  • At least 3 years’ experience in sustainability, operational management and/or agriculture.
  • Experience in managing field activities in a rural setting and/or working with farmer organizations.
  • An understanding of sustainability certifications or sustainability projects in the agricultural domain.
  • Experience designing and implementing sustainability projects, both environmental and community development focused.
  • Affinity with intercultural communication and both corporate and not-for-profit environments.
  • You thrive in a fast-paced working environment, and you can balance different priorities.
  • Self-starter and all-round mentality; willing to execute simple tasks as well as manage big portfolios.
  • A passionate and ambitious worker; accurate, efficient, and problem-solving. 
  • Fluency in French and English

What we offer you

You will be part of a fast-growing organisation and broad network with excellent future career opportunities. We offer substantial freedom in your work, engagement in a broad range of sustainability topics, and personal development opportunities. You will learn about the newest tools and programs to bring a positive change to cocoa farmer livelihoods and environment.

Work status 40 hours per week.

How to Apply?

Please apply via the form below by May 6th.

If you have any questions about the role, feel free to reach out to saloni.goyal@beyondbeans.org.

Note: Fluency in English and French is required
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