Farm Progress

New Mexico chile harvest answers the 'red or green' question

The large, New Mexico style chile peppers are a big part of the state's culture and cuisine

Todd Fitchette

October 7, 2022

10 Slides

The Machete chili variety is popular with growers and consumers for its size and flavor.Todd Fitchette

The New Mexico chile harvest gets underway in September. Locations like Deming and Hatch are known for their production of chile peppers that are part of Southwestern cuisine. The large, New Mexico style chiles are also part of a culture in the Land of Enchantment. Restaurant goers will often be asked “red or green,” when ordering, meaning, do they want red chile with their food, or green chile.

Hartman Farms in Deming, NM, farms chile and other crops in the region. Green chile harvest in late September was going through its first of probably two picks of chiles from fields on the edge of town.

Developed and bred by Arizona farmer Ed Curry, the Machete variety is popular with growers and buyers as it can yield good tonnage and high quality. Olam Spices, a vertically integrated global producer and supplier of spice ingredients, processes Hartman’s chile peppers from a facility in Deming.

About the Author(s)

Todd Fitchette

Associate Editor, Western Farm Press

Todd Fitchette, associate editor with Western Farm Press, spent much of his journalism career covering agriculture in California and the western United States. Aside from reporting about issues related to farm production, environmental regulations and legislative matters, he has extensive experience covering the dairy industry, western water issues and politics. His journalistic experience includes local daily and weekly newspapers, where he was recognized early in his career as an award-winning news photographer.

Fitchette is US Army veteran and a graduate of California State University, Chico. 

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