The New Mexico Chile Association named chile entrepreneur, Lou Biad, as the 2021 Member of the Year during their annual association meeting on February 2nd 2021. The annual meeting usually occurs in conjunction with NMSU’s New Mexico Chile Conference however due to gathering restrictions the event was held virtually this year.
Entrepreneur Lou Biad, has dedicated his life to the chile industry. Mr. Biad’s father started in the industry by planting chile’s in Arrey, NM in 1951. Lou then built the first chile dehydrator in New Mexico in 1958. Mr. Biad was the first to bring mechanical dehydration to the industry which revolutionized the way red chile was processed. Before Mr. Biad’s invention of dehydrating chile, chile was dehydrated over a span of multiple days on roof tops and sand hills.
Mr. Biad served on NMSU’s Chile Task Force and was one of the founding members of the New Mexico Chile Association. It was under Mr. Biad’s leadership and vision that formed the industry led chile association to advocate for the industry.
This is the first award that the chile association has ever given out.
“This may be a Member of the Year Award but its more of a lifetime achieve award in this case,” said Gene Baca, Bueno Foods. “Lou Biad’s contributions to the industry span over decades and I couldn’t think of anyone more deserving. We are all indebted to Lou for all he has done for this industry”
Joram Robbs, the New Mexico Chile Association’s Executive Director, presented the award to Lou Biad at one of their chile dehydrating plants in Radium Springs, NM.
“The word that describes Lou Biad is passion. He is extremely passionate about the chile industry and that follows through with anything he does or puts his mind to,” said Dino Cervantes, Cervantes Enterprises. “Lou saw the need for the industry to work together to solve issues that threatened the industry, and his legacy lives on through this association. There could not be a better person to receive this award than Lou Biad”.
Mr. Biad turns 90 this year and he is still heavily involved in the chile industry through his sons who now operate the family business. Congratulations Mr. Lou Biad!