New Mexico's chile production dropped dramatically in 1999 due to disease and weather conditions. Total production was down 44% from 1998. Green chile production fell 40% while red chile production dropped 51%. Marked declines were registered in all varieties. Harvested acreage decreased 25%, from 21,500 in 1998 to 16,200 in 1999. Dona Ana County had the largest decrease in harvested acreage, a drop of 2,300 acres.
Yields were down in all chile varieties in 1999. Green chile yield decreases were: long mild green, 28%; long hot green, 23%; jalapeno, 21%. red variety decreases were: paprika, 24%; cayenne, 17%; long mild red 1.4%; long hot red, 36%.
The value of the 1999 chile crop totaled $31.1 million down 46% from the previous year. The long mild varieties decreased in value by 40%, while the long hot varieties decreased by 68%. All other varieties combined decreased in value by 41%.