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Soybean Trial and Seed Specialist


  • Organization: FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • Location: Afghanistan
  • Grade: All levels - NPP - National Project Personnel - Local Contractors Agreement
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Agriculture and Forestry
  • Closing Date: 2022-12-08

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Please note that Closure Date and Time displayed above are based on date and time settings of your personal device

  • FAO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality, background and culture
  • Qualified female applicants, qualified nationals of non-and under-represented Members and person with disabilities are encouraged to apply
  • Everyone who works for FAO is required to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and professional conduct, and to uphold FAO's values
  • FAO, as a Specialized Agency of the United Nations, has a zero-tolerance policy for conduct that is incompatible with its status, objectives and mandate, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination  
  • All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks
  • All applications will be treated with the strictest confidentiality

Organizational Setting

AO Afghanistan is investing, across all 34 provinces, in resilience reinforcing actions that focus on protecting agriculture livelihoods and local ecosystems, boosting local production of nutritious foods and cash-incomes, and safeguarding critical agriculture sectoral development gains achieved over the past couple of decades through revitalizing rural markets and economy. In 2023, FAO will contribute to the humanitarian components of the UN Strategic Framework 2023-2025 through four priority actions: (i) Safeguarding Wheat Seed Security, (ii) Enhancing Local Production of Nutritious Food, (iii) Livestock Protection and Dairy Sector Support, and (iv) Restoring Irrigation Structures to Boost Cash Incomes. FAO will also contribute towards resilience building activities and longer-term transformational processes as part of the implementation of the UN Strategic Framework 2023-2025.

There are six positions, one per duty station: Mazar, Kunduz, Kabul, Jalalabad, Kandahar and Herat.

These are National Project Personnel positions – SB4

Reporting Line

The Soybean Trial and Seed Specialist will work under the overall supervision of the FAO Representative, the direct supervision of the Regional Coordinator and the technical supervision of the Head of the Emergency Response and Resilience Programme Team as well as the Head of the Agriculture Team

Technical Focus

Provide technical and scientific guidance in the day-to-day management of the soybean national variety trials and ensure the best performance for the conduction of the variety maintenance program

Tasks and responsibilities

• Develop a work plan in consultation with the Seed Certification Directorate and Soybean Farmer Association, on daily and weekly data collection pertaining to procurement, processing and seed quality assurance from private Seed Companies;
• Assist Agriculture Research Institute of Afghanistan (ARIA) on Variety for Cultivation and Use (VCU)test and soybean variety screening and prepare data to present to variety release committee for the release of the soybean variety;
• Assist ARIA on Distinctness Uniformity and Stability (DUS) test to collect morphological data of soybean varieties for development of Soybean catalogue;
• Select appropriate sites for optimum production of Breeder, Foundation, and Certified Seeds;
• Assist Improved seed Enterprise (ISE) on production of sufficient quantity of foundation seed;
• Arrange a Seed Production Planning Workshop with the support of Seed Certification Directorate in the respective regions;
• Ensure, availability of all inputs in the right quantity, of the right quality and at the right times for efficient seed production;
• Ensure that adoption and implementation of the best agronomic practices in the field and post-harvest handling operations, including ensuring that processing and packaging of soybean are adopted for Breeder, Foundation, Certified Seeds of soybean value chain;
• Conducting internal quality assurance measures for soybean, as appropriate;
• Work closely with the Seed Certification Directorate to ensure timely and appropriate soybean field inspection, collection of seed sampling, seed testing and availability of test results;
• Support private Seed enterprise on production of sufficient quantities of certified seed;
• Ensure appropriate management of the soybean seed storage to avoid quality deterioration and effective seed delivery to relative locations, when necessary;
• Coordinate the distribution of machinery to relevant stakeholders;
• Lead training of field-level personnel in essential technical aspects of soybean seed production, and provide updates the Agriculture Team;
• Assist in the formation of Common Interest Groups (CIGs) – advising the size of each CIG and its composition, and thereafter, assist farmers (member of the CIGs) on the production of soybean;
• In collaboration with the Enterprise & CIGs (Common Interest Groups) Development Specialist, prepare and conduct training for the CIGs in group dynamics, financial management, revolving fund management and business plan development; Facilitate the registration of CIGs and ensure they become a legal entity;
• Perform any other task as required.


Minimum Requirements

• Advanced university degree (Master or equivalent) or University degree (Bachelor) in Agriculture, Agronomy or other agriculture related subject;
• For Advanced university degree (Master or equivalent) at least five (5) years of professional experience in Agronomy or seed management including the design and implementation of agricultural emergency and resilience projects, including at least three years of experience in project support services, field work management, trial data collection, Analysis, seed, seed production and handling and reporting experience;
• For university degree (Bachelor) at least seven (7) years of professional experience in in Agronomy or seed management including the design and implementation of agricultural emergency and resilience projects, including at least three years of experience in project support services, field work management, trial data collection, Analysis, seed, seed production and handling and reporting experience;
• Working knowledge (level C) of English and local languages (Pashto and/or Dari);
• National of Afghanistan.

FAO Core Competencies

• Results Focus
• Teamwork
• Communication
• Building Effective Relationships
• Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Technical/Functional Skills

• Basic knowledge of Agriculture research (VCU and DUS tests of soybean and soybean production in the country;
• Experience working with national and international organizations that are operating in the field of Agriculture development in Afghanistan is a significant advantage;
• Previous work experience with the UN is an advantage;
• Ability to work independently, to organize and coordinate with demonstrated ability to write clearly and concisely in working languages;
• Experience of work under emergency conditions is preferred;
• Experience organizing stakeholder meetings or workshops with various partners;
• Strong professional command of Microsoft Office, in particular Word and Excel.


  • FAO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing)
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered. If you need help please contact:
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be accepted
  • Please note that FAO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU) / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed at
  • For additional employment opportunities visit the FAO employment website:
  • Appointment will be subject to certification that the candidate is medically fit for appointment, accreditation, any residency or visa requirements, and security clearances.

FAO seeks gender, geographical and linguistic diversity in its staff and international consultants in order to best serve FAO Members in all regions.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.