To ensure that local stakeholders sustain and even multiply the results, the project has been training local expertise, i.e. staff in local TISIs, to train and advise SMEs on various topics, which include quality compliance & standards, supply chain management, packaging and market development. Engagement by the project of consultants from the region for the HACCP capacity building points to a good example of the potential sustainability element. The consultants were trained in HACCP in Kenya and are now replicating the training for other SMEs and trainees in Tanzania and Zambia. These trainees will in turn be able to advise companies and train others. Nine local trainers were trained in Tanzania to advise SMES on quality compliance and food safety standards.“Guiding the enterprises in implementing HACCP under the ITC project has been a great milestone in my career as a food safety consultant, auditor and trainer. The training workshops and visits to the enterprises gave me a wealth of experience in HACCP implementation and its eventual benefits. I thank ITC for giving me the opportunity to serve as a national consultant and look forward to having all the enterprises certified to HACCP in the near future.”Roselyne Makau – National consultant, KenyaIn Zambia, the project trained and coached 10 Trainers cum Counsellors (TcCs) (including seven women) to assist SMEs to implement HACCP. Eight TcCs passed their final exams. Furthermore, the TcCs and were trained on traceability systems and organic certification in the honey sector. Some of them already received enquiries from an international buyer to inspect honey samples before shipment. SNV Zambia has engaged others for work on its Quality Compliance related project financed by AfDB. Future projects can also utilise these resources as the project did in Kenya by engaging local consultants previously trained in the country by ITC in past projects. During the experience-sharing workshop organised in June 2016 in Lusaka, SMEs confirmed that the implementation of HACCP resulted in business growth potential for the companies and opening up new markets that did not exist before the project. Catalysing the sector towards organic certification in Zambia: In May 2016, the project used the foundation of capacity building done in other areas of quality compliance to introduce training on organic certification. In the regional spirit of the project, ITC engaged expertise from Kenya (KEBS) to facilitate the training and the results were as follows:
Enhancing the quality of packaging standards and testingPackaging testing machinery was commission at ZABS in January 2015 and ITC trained ZABS staff on using the equipment. ZABS developed packaging standards for Zambia as a result of networking of ZABS facilitated by the project with the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) in 2014 and ensuing consultations with local stakeholders.Moreover, ZABS now has a greater packaging awareness for the testing of packaging materials provided to suppliers and processors. In June 2016, ITC trained four laboratory technicians and engineers working at the Packaging Laboratory of Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS) in Lusaka. In June 2016, a Sustainability Workshop was organised by ITC and local stakeholders. Several companies reported good progress in terms of competitiveness since ITC sensitized them on food standards and quality compliance issues coupled with the project interventions that addressed their food safety related challenges.