Western Pecan Growers Association conference discusses marketing opportunities
LAS CRUCES, N.M. — The annual Western Pecan Growers Association conference brought in more than 400 area growers to Las Cruces to talk about issues affecting production.
During the conference growers discussed protecting their crops from insects and marketing efforts.
"We do produce an excellent product and it's a product we want people to know about and get the word out on," said Western Pecan Growers Association Executive Director John White.
New Mexico has averaged well over 60 million pounds of pecans a year for the last few years and in 2012 the value of the crop netted more than $110.5 million.
Those totals ranked New Mexico as the second highest pecan producer in the country for that year.
The New Mexico Department of Agriculture has been promoting the state's pecans that have reached as far as China.
The Western Pecan Growers Association are also working on introducing pecans to more markets.
White explained pecan yields are cyclical and are back on the upswing in the state.
"You'll have a little bit of a down year before you have another big year so it will probably be down a little bit but hopefully it results in better quality," White said.
A better quality also translates into more money.
White said they are also going to work on marketing pecans as a healthy snack option and hope to gain national exposure similar to pistachios and almonds.