Located in northwestern Iowa on the South Dakota border, Sioux County is very prosperous and quite conservative. As of July 2013, the population of Sioux County was 34,547. According to the 2013 Census estimates, 83 percent of residents self-identified as non-Latino whites or Caucasians and 9.7 percent as Hispanic/Latino.
In 2007, Michigan ranked first in the Midwest and 10th in the nation in the total number of Latino principal farm operators. Past research has shown Latino farmers in Michigan are distributed across families that have been in this country from one to several generations; a majority (59%) of them have been farming for more than 10 years, and have prior farming experience; and approximately 50% of respondents are blueberry farmers; 25% livestock farmers, and 25% other farmers (grains, hay, ornamentals and other field crops).
The study locations in Missouri will be centered on Barry and Laurence counties in southwest Missouri and Pettis and Saline counties in central Missouri. The Latino farmers in southwest Missouri tend to be new, small, and focused on livestock production and small-scale farming. The farmers in central Missouri are similar in that they are new but the farmland there is better for crop production so there is the possibility crop production on scales not possible in southwest Missouri.
This project was supported by Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant no. 2016-68006-25210 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.