Agriculture Education Funding

The state legislature awarded the New Mexico Department of Agriculture $160,000 for agriculture education in Bernalillo, Dulce and Jemez Valley public schools. Agricultural education, school gardens/outdoor classrooms, food production and nutrition education projects are encouraged.
The state legislature awarded the New Mexico Department of Agriculture $160,000 for agriculture education in Bernalillo, Dulce and Jemez Valley public schools.

Agriculture education funding awarded

Bernalillo, Dulce, Jemez Valley Public Schools were eligible for funding

During the 2019 legislative session, the state legislature awarded the New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) $160,000 for agriculture education at Bernalillo Public Schools, Dulce Independent School District and Jemez Valley Public Schools.

“It’s important that all New Mexicans know where our food and fiber come from, and the education process should begin at an early age,” said New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte. “With a large population of our New Mexico farmers and ranchers aging, it’s also important that we engage our youth and get them excited about the agriculture industry.”

The average age of New Mexico farmers and ranchers is 59.8, which is the second highest in the nation behind Hawaii.

The following projects were funded:

Dulce Independent Schools: Metal Fabrication Safety Upgrade ($2,418.68)

Bernalillo Public Schools: Cultivating the Past to Sustain the Future – the building of greenhouses ($73,467.99)

Jemez Valley Public Schools: Renaissance of Agriculture – weekend classes and the materials for demonstration and project design ($7,280.00)

Dulce Independent Schools: Dulce Year – Round Garden to Cafeteria Initiative ($69,213.33)

House Agriculture & Water Resources Committee Chairman Representative Derrick J. Lente sponsored of the appropriation.

“It is my hope that bringing ag into the classroom will expose students of all ages and demographics to agriculture,” said Lente. “We hope to not only provide the students with ag education but also to foster an appreciation and interest in where their food comes from, as well as the possibilities the industry may have for them.”