An evaluation of the small farmer outreach training and technical assistance program for farmers of color in Texas
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The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of the small farmer outreach training and technical assistance programs as related to farmers of color. The items to be evaluated included financial considerations, educational effectiveness, access and acquisition of farm loans, participation in Extension sponsored events and involvement in community activities. The sample population for this study was small scale agricultural producers representing two ethnic groups, African Americans and Hispanics, located in Cameron, Hidalgo, Starr and Willacy counties and enrolled in the Small Farmer Outreach Training and Technical Assistance Program (N=68) between October 1, 2001, and September 30, 2004. Descriptive statistics were used for reporting personal characteristics of the participants, as well as to determine knowledge gained and effectiveness of the Small Farmer Outreach Training and Technical Assistance Program. Statistical Package for the Social SciencesÃÂ® (SPSS) was used to calculate frequencies, percentages and variability of the variables. The major findings of the study were as follows: 1. The Small Farmer Outreach Training and Technical Assistance Program is an effective educational program in teaching farm management techniques and assisting with the acquisition of financial resources. 2. Farm size was relatively small with over half of the farms being fewer than 50 acres. 3. The ethnic identity of participants was more likely to be Hispanic than African American. 4. Total household income for a majority of the participants was less than $50,000. 5. The majority of the participants were part-time farmers. 6. The majority of the participants had a farm plan. 7. A majority of the participants had at least a high school education. 8. Program participants were likely to be approved for a loan through the United States Department of Agriculture.
Daniels, Nelson T (2005). An evaluation of the small farmer outreach training and technical assistance program for farmers of color in Texas. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from