Martian Cultivation: Benefits and Limitations of Urban Agriculture in San Marcos, TX
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Urban agriculture is a growing trend worldwide, and San Marcos, Texas is not immune to this pattern. Urban agriculture consists of growing plants or raising animals in or around cities, while integrating that production with local economic and ecological systems. But urban agriculturalists in San Marcos face a variety of limitations in their pursuit of success. This research begins by discussing the benefits they provide for a city's environmental, social, and economic health. The central purpose of this research is to identify urban agriculture's limitations in San Marcos and put forward recommendations for improving the local food system. A local food system refers to a community's local food sources, production, processing, consumption, and disposal, which, ideally, are integrated and all occur within or near the community they serve. Plenty of research has already discussed the benefits and complications associated with urban agriculture, and this thesis aims to apply existing knowledge about this topic specifically to San Marcos, Texas. This research utilizes existing literature, information about policies in San Marcos and other cities, interviews with urban agriculturalists in and around San Marcos, and examples from other cities in Central Texas with successful urban agriculture systems. The results of this study may be useful for agriculturalists in the San Marcos area, local policy makers, and other interested parties in their attempts to support urban agriculture.