Posted at: 11/30/2012 6:44 PM
Updated at: 11/30/2012 6:47 PM
By: The Associated Press
LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) - Researchers at New Mexico State University are sharing in a $2.4 million grant that will be used to market the benefits of pecans.
The researchers are working with colleagues at the University of Georgia and Texas A&M.
Their focus is helping pecan growers stay competitive by capitalizing on the crop's nutritional benefits.
They'll also be looking for ways to improve production efficiency and profitability.
Georgia leads the nation in pecan production, followed by New Mexico and Texas.
Federal agricultural statistics show New Mexico's growers produced about 61 million pounds of pecans last year.
The state's crop was valued at more than $162 million. Cooperative Extension specialist Richard Heerema says NMSU became interested because researchers have seen a major shift in the way consumers and nutritionists have come to look at pecans.
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