As we enter Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct.15), we acknowledge and appreciate the contributions the U.S. Hispanic community has made to advance our economic and agricultural growth.
According to the 2017 Census of Agriculture, there were 112,451 Hispanic producers (PDF, 1.3 MB) in the United States. The Prieto family, who migrated from Mexico, runs one of the nation’s 86,278 Hispanic-operated farms in Somis, Calif. They specialize in growing Hass avocados and Meyer lemons in their orchards. California has a total of 14,597 Hispanic producers and is the second top state for Hispanic producers (Texas being the first with 41,143 Hispanic producers). Between 2017 and the previous Census of Agriculture in 2012, the total number of U.S. producers increased 7%, while the number of Hispanic farmers increased 13%.
Growing up in Mexico, Salvador Prieto watched his father work on their family farm. He migrated to the United States with a passion for music, but once in America, fell in love with agriculture. His wife, Martha Romero, grew up in Los Angeles, and with their shared love for agriculture, the future of the Prieto family farm began.
Hispanic famers play an important part in not only our agricultural community but across the nation. It is vital that their voices count in the upcoming 2022 Census of Agriculture.