Cold Chain Market Assessment



This research project is intended to:

  1. Evaluate and segment the market for health and agricultural cold chain technologies, identifying current trends, opportunities and barriers to market transformation and strategies to accelerate their adoption at scale.
  2. Establish and characterize existing cold chain technologies, identify business models, quantify existing cold chain infrastructure, identify technical challenges and opportunities for improvement
  3. Establish the status of policy and regulatory frameworks in place for cold chain technologies, accompanying challenges and opportunities for future policy recommendations

The results of this research will be an important component of the evidence base for future activities undertaken by the Efficiency for Access Coalition and CLASP’s Climate Program to support Cold Chain development in emerging economies.

Project Requirements

We are seeking a well-qualified individual or research team to conduct a thorough investigation into the current and prospective market for cold chain storage technologies for use in on-, off-, and weak-grid applications, with a focus on first mile opportunities. This research effort should focus on the following three regionally representative markets: Kenya, India, Nigeria.

This research effort is intended to be primarily desk-based with information drawn from reviews of pre-existing research on cold chain applications from a range of sources. The research team will be expected to carry out independent interviews with stakeholders including cold chain unit manufacturers and distributors, energy efficiency experts, end-users of cold storage technologies, experts in cold chain logistics, agricultural stakeholders, health stakeholders and, others with first-hand knowledge of the topic.

Specific tasks envisaged for this effort are as follows.

  1. Conduct literature review to map current cold chain focused interventions in Kenya, Nigeria and India:
    1. Identify current cooling interventions and focus areas
  2. Identify the stakeholders involved and their roles
  3. Identify gaps across interventions and geographies and prioritize opportunities for greater alignment across partners
  4. Conduct a literature review and stakeholder consultations to characterize the existing market for cold chain technologies:
  5. Quantitatively assess the current total demand and future market potential for first mile cold chain solutions considering both domestic and export markets in the priority countries across health (vaccine) and agricultural (Fresh Fruit and Vegetables, Fish, Meat, and Dairy) cold value chains
  6. Map out the supply chain for cold chain technologies across above cold value chains.
  7. Develop a taxonomy for segmenting the cold chain technology market according to size, and/or technical and performance criteria.
  8. Identify for each market segment, opportunities to improve performance and price through technology innovation, policy and/or business model innovation.
  9. Identify trends, opportunities and barriers to market transformation and strategies to accelerate the scale up of prioritized cold chain interventions.
  10. Identify existing cold chain technologies across all market segments. For each technology:
    1. Detail key components of the cold storage systems design and performance.
  11. Explore where the greatest cost improvements can be made in system design and use.
  12. Quantify the existing supporting cold chain infrastructure including facilities such as refrigerated warehouses and estimated future growth/demand potential.
  13. Quantify the number of manufacturers and distributors/businesses currently in the sector and greatest opportunities for future growth.
  14. Conduct an analysis of the technologies best suited for policy interventions
  15. Develop 2 case studies to highlight innovations and trends in cold chain technology deployed in off- or weak-grid settings
  16. Conduct analysis of business models employed in the cold chain sector with a particular focus on first mile approaches that reach small-medium farmers.
  17. Outline the policy and regulatory frameworks in place for cold chains in relation to standards, testing, certification, and refrigerants etc. and accompanying challenges and opportunities for future policy recommendations.
    1. Map out the duties and VAT incentives that are applicable to cold chain storage technologies.
  18. Map out the roles and responsibilities of different agencies involved in creating and enforcing policies in select markets.
  19. Collate knowledge from key market actors of existing policy based incentives (e.g. VAT exemptions and subsidies) for cold storage sales/market building and gather their views on what policies they see as helpful and unhelpful to developing markets for high efficiency off-grid cold storage appliances
  20. What can policymakers do to create opportunities for in-market assembly of cold storage solutions?
  21. Make recommendations for policies that will enable further development of the cold chain market. Identify the potential market impacts from implementing these policies (e.g. changes in sales volumes).


The final output of the project will be a 20 page report (plus chapters for each country that should not exceed 25 pages) that addresses all of the Project Requirements detailed above. The report should include an Executive Summary, figures and tables with referenced sources, and a discussion of areas for further research. The consultant will also deliver a webinar to the CLASP team and external stakeholders.


Interested parties should submit a technical and financial proposal for preparing the market study specified above.

Proposals should include an elaboration of the following, at a minimum:

  • Research methods to be employed
  • Preliminary list of resources to be used to gather evidence
  • Preliminary list of partner organizations to be consulted
  • Research team qualifications and relevant experience
  • Evidence of past success delivering related projects

Delivery Requirements and Timeline

  • The project will start in, February 2021 with an inception report and kickoff meeting with the Project team.
  • A list of stakeholders to interview and an interview guide – March 2021
  • Throughout the project, parties will be expected to give a fortnightly update to the CLASP team to track progress.
  • An annotated outline of report – April 2021
  • The first draft report is due for review by mid- May 2021
  • The final report is due end of June 2021


Parties that wish to respond to this RFP must complete the LEIA prequalification questionnaire on the provided website link . This is a requirement for all sub-recipients of FCDO funding. Companies or individual consultants must also register as a CLASP Implementing Partner. Registration is easy and must be completed via the CLASP website here before final submittal.

Interested parties are required to submit two separate proposals: A Technical Proposal and a Financial Proposal. The files should be named as per the following example: “[Contractor Name] _ [Technical/Financial] Proposal_RFP [Name].

The Technical Proposal should not exceed 20 pages in length and must include the following elements:

  • A detailed approach and methodology for implementation and management of the project. [3 to 6 pages]
  • A summary of qualifications of key personnel that will be engaged in the assignment. Technical knowledge of cold storage technologies and applications is required. An understanding of off- and weak-grid appliance markets is an advantage, as are academic research qualifications e.g. PhD/MRes (Master of Research). [2 to 5 pages]
  • A summary of related research experience. [2 to 4 pages]
  • A project timeline [1-2 pages]

The Financial Proposal must include the following elements:

  • Detailed budget estimate (in US Dollars) outlining fees and expected expenses for the duration of the project. Detailed budget should include all direct and indirect cost estimates for executing the project and include a breakdown (in days) of the level of effort associated and daily billing rate for each task.

CLASP team will evaluate proposals received from respondents. Selection of the candidate will be based upon the following criteria:

  • Robustness of proposed methodology
  • Relevant qualifications, including working knowledge of the off-grid energy sector, experience in relevant market and technology characterization and mapping.
  • Experience in focus countries.
  • Total cost and value for money.

The deadline for application is 25th January 2021. Proposals must be submitted online via the CLASP website.

Please find Frequently Asked Questions here.


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