Latinx/Hispanic farmers are an underrepresented group with the largest number of farm operators in the US. However, agricultural educators have encountered challenges in identifying Latinx farmers in Pennsylvania and consequently, in meeting their needs. This study aims to contribute to improved agricultural programming by offering an exploratory overview of Latinx farmers in the Commonwealth, and to bring to light the experiences of Extension educators when working with Latinxs in the agricultural context. Qualitative research interviews were conducted with seventeen Latinxs at different stages of their farming journey, and with twelve educators with experience in agriculture programming and outreach to Latinxs. Latinx farmers discussed the characteristics, goals, challenges, and solutions of their farming operations. Educators discussed their motivations to serve Latinx farmers, the challenges they face in meeting their needs, and the implementation of targeted strategies for successful programming. Both groups discussed challenges they believe Latinx farmers face due to their ethnicity and provided recommendations to better serve the Latinx farming population. Based on the findings, agricultural educators could support Latinx farmers by developing statewide programming, including programming in Spanish, having employers allocate a percentage of educators’ responsibilities to connecting with this audience, creating a Latinx farmers’ network, partnering with organizations connected with Latinx farmers, participating in cultural competency training, and promoting stories of success. Our methodology and findings can be adapted to educators in other locations working with minority populations.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Plant Science