Ecological Constraints as Catalysts for Ideological Development: The Rise of Agropreneurs in the Southwestern United States

Abstract A new generation of self-taught farmers who embody ideological aspects of the anti-globalization and slow food movements are increasing throughout the United States. Armed with notions that integrate human rights, protection of the environment, food security, and sustainability these agroprenuers are creating agricultural opportunities from ecological constraints that would otherwise be viewed as obstacles. To understand this process we analyze interviews with farmers new to the northern New Mexican region. We found that after relocating, these transplants emerged as agroprenuers, practicing ideologies through nominal farming informed by the principles of small, local, sustainable economies which enhance individual and community quality of life.