The fertile Hatch and Rio Grande River Valleys in New Mexico grow the best chile peppers in the world.
These peppers are the pride and joy of New Mexican culture — the heart and soul of our cuisine. That’s why chile has been our heritage at Bueno Foods for generations.
But, did you know New Mexico’s favorite crop is in peril?
New Mexico’s chile farmers and producers are in trouble.
New Mexico’s Chile acreage has dropped from 35,000 acres in the 1990s to 8,500 acres in 2021.
How did it happen?
Many restaurants buy Mexican chile or chile from other countries because it’s cheaper (cheaper labor, less or no regulation.) NAFTA made this possible because there were no protections for the New Mexico chile industry.
Companies label their chile with the “Hatch” name because they have a P.O. box in Hatch, New Mexico or their chile is processed there.
Or because they know the label Hatch has cache for consumers. But it is not necessarily grown in Hatch, New Mexico.
True or False? Assumptions New Mexicans Make about Chile
If I buy my chile in New Mexico, it must have been grown in New Mexico.
When I eat at my favorite New Mexican restaurants, the chile they serve me is always grown in New Mexico.
When I buy from New Mexico companies, their chile is automatically guaranteed to be grown in New Mexico.
If it’s called Hatch, it must have been grown in Hatch, New Mexico.
How do you know you are getting True New Mexico Grown Chile?
The best way to know if your chiles were grown in New Mexico is to look for the New Mexico Certified Chile™ certification.
This coveted certification seal means:
- The chile was grown in New Mexico.
- The chile was independently audited by the New Mexico Chile Association via a rigorous inspection and record verification process.
- You can be certain that you are getting 100% New Mexico grown chile.
Look for the seal!
Doing our Part
As native New Mexicans from a long-time New Mexican family, our mission at Bueno Foods has always been to preserve our New Mexican heritage. We do this through the authentic food we provide to our customers.
When we discovered the possibility that we might lose our cherished crop, we had to act.
- We became the first processor and company to receive the New Mexico Certified Chile™ certification.
- Our farmers were the first to be certified in the state of New Mexico.
- Our New Mexico-grown chile packages have a certified seal from the New Mexico Chile Association.
Our Hatch grown products have a certified seal from the Hatch Chile Association. The certification seal means the chile was grown in Hatch, N.M. an agricultural area defined by the Hatch Chile Association.