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Agriculture: Why It’s Easy to Grow in New Mexico

From meat and dairy to pecans and chile peppers, chances are you've consumed some of this state's finest products.

By Kim Madlom on November 12, 2021

Apple Canyon Gourmet in New Mexico
Sergio Salvador

Food processing and value-added agriculture in New Mexico are thriving. The Land of Enchantment offers vast open spaces for diverse crop planting and livestock production, favorable weather conditions and an expert workforce.

New Mexico has a long legacy in farming and ranching. Agriculture is the state’s third-largest industry.

Did You Know?

Some of the nation’s leading names in food production
call New Mexico home, including General Mills, Leprino Foods,
Southwest Cheese and Stampede Meat.

Top commodities in New Mexico include cattle and livestock, cheese and dairy products, pecans and chile peppers.

In addition to outstanding agriculture, food processing in New Mexico continues to grow and attract new investment. Companies, including Apple Canyon Gourmet, Beck & Bulow and Bueno Foods, have recently announced expansions.

Apple Canyon Gourmet
Sergio Salvador

A Dream Come True at Apple Canyon

Celebrating its 20th year in business in 2021, Apple Canyon Gourmet is an artisan food products manufacturer located in Albuquerque. The company is the product of the lifelong dream of owner and fifth-generation New Mexican Anna Herrera-Shawver to create handcrafted food products made from traditional family recipes passed down and perfected for generations.

“Much like its culture, New Mexican cuisine is distinctly unique,” says Herrera-Shawver, who co-owns the company with her husband, Greg.

Apple Canyon offers a diverse portfolio of products, including hot sauce, salsa, condiments, chile products and nonalcoholic cocktail mixers. The company includes brand names such as Santa Fe Seasons, Santa Fe Mixes, Santa Fe Gourmet Coffee and Holy Chipotle.

“There’s a reason we ship our products all over the world.
The flavors of New Mexico foods are unmatched.”

Anna Herrera-Shawver | Apple Canyon Gourmet

“Each of our team members is a foodie and helps to keep our recipes authentic,” Herrera-Shawver says. “They taste our foods when in production; they eat them at home and share them with family and friends.”

Herrera-Shawver says New Mexico flavors result from various cultures that have influenced the foods of Mexico over the years – Spanish, Aztec and Mayan.

“These civilizations brought exotic meats, fruits and vegetables to Mexican cuisine, and the Spanish conquistadors introduced rice and flour to the culinary mix, as well, forever changing the way traditional breads were made,” she says. “Whether the bold flavors of piñon coffee, subtle sweetness of Biscochitos or the world-renowned spice of Hatch green chile, the flavors of New Mexico are one-of-a-kind.”

Thanks to customer loyalty and rapid growth, the company is scheduled to break ground in 2021 on the first phase of its new facility.

Rooted in New Mexico Tradition

Bueno Foods, a 70-year-old family business, is also expanding in Albuquerque with additional storage and manufacturing capacity so that it can more widely distribute New Mexico chiles and food products throughout the U.S.

Rio Blue Produce and Sierra Madre Produce, both with operations in Chihuahua, Mexico, have selected Santa Teresa for distribution operations that will combine 92,000 square feet of warehouse and distribution space.

J.P. Bulow, left, and Tony Beck, CEOs of Beck & Bulow
Kate Russell

Homegrown in Santa Fe

Beck & Bulow, a homegrown business that sells high-quality meat and meat products directly to restaurants and consumers, is expanding its operations in Santa Fe.

Founded by CEOs J.P. Bulow and Tony Beck, the company has plans to purchase warehouse, processing and office space. Beck & Bulow specializes in bison, elk, wild boar, beef, lamb and poultry, and also offers wild-caught Alaskan seafood.

“Sustainable farming is the way of the future for New Mexico. People need this meat, and we’re providing jobs.”

Tony Beck | Beck & Bulow

Beck & Bulow distributes to restaurants but significantly grew its online business as a result of the pandemic. “Expansion at Beck & Bulow is all about getting back to the roots of the old world and spreading the fruits of that to all of our customers,” says J.P. Bulow, one of the company’s co-founders.

Beck & Bulow raises its own buffalo and cattle. Buffalo meat makes up 60% of its sales. The company contracted with other butchers to cut its meat, but the expansion changes that. The butchering capability completes the ranch-to-table cycle for Beck & Bulow.

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