New Mexico Community Capital Launches Native Farmer in Residence Program

The nonprofit New Mexico Community Capital (NMCC) is introducing a new way to connect Native American farmers to Native consumers and larger non-Native markets. The Native Farmer in Residence program is a peer-to-peer based Native farmer training and support program based on delivering the tools and knowledge a farmer needs to enhance success. With funding from the Native American Agricultural Fund, the program is launching in 2021 with the selection of a cohort of 20 individuals engaged in farming practices, from micro-farms of less than nine acres to larger farms in the range of 40 to 60 acres. Training will take place over a one-year period at farms, in NMCC classrooms, and online. Each participant receives a Chromebook loaded with a suite of Google business tools tailored to farming. Additionally, each participant is funded with a stipend for the purpose of investing in the needs of their farm. Program curriculum includes enterprise resource analysis; developing a whole farm plan; budgeting, recordkeeping, accounting/bookkeeping; finding new markets; and building a business plan.