Food systems development, while historically not the purview of professional planners, would benefit greatly from their interdisciplinary expertise. Small agricultural businesses are important economic and social drivers in the Middle Rio Grande. Increased demand for locally grown foods by Middle Rio Grande residents and food businesses, like restaurants and grocery stores, mean that more than ever, farm businesses have opportunities for success and for making meaningful contributions to their communities. In addition, many of the necessary resources exist right here in this area that can enable local growersâ€™ success, including agricultural land, irrigation infrastructure, easy access to markets, and a growing young work force interested in agricultural careers. This research explores how small-scale farmers in the Middle Rio Grande articulate success for their businesses. Facilitating growth in this sector has broader implications for the health and well being of communities in the area. Prioritizing development of these businesses keeps small land parcels in agricultural use, maintains historic cultural practices in agrarian communities, provides access to affordable healthy food, and increases consciousness about water use.
Community and Regional Planning
Level of Degree
School of Architecture and Planning
First Committee Member (Chair)
Second Committee Member
sustainability, agriculture, planning, food security, food systems, community
Wentzel-Fisher, Sarah. "Success of Small-Scale Farms in the Middle Rio Grande Region." (2014). https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/arch_etds/29