- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 2, 2016

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) - It was a good year for New Mexico’s chile farmers.

Statistics released Tuesday by state and federal agriculture officials show the acreage planted, the number of tons produced and the value of New Mexico’s most well-known crop all increased in 2015.

Officials say the value of chile production in 2015 was estimated at more than $41 million, compared to $38.7 million the previous year.

Chile used for processing accounted for most of the total, while the fresh crops came in at $7.5 million.

A total of 66,700 tons were produced last year, marking the most since 2012 but not as much as the nearly 90,000 tons produced in 2005. Production has fluctuated over the last decade.

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