Special Report

The Most Iconic Product in Each State

31. New Mexico
> Most iconic product:
Chile peppers

The chile pepper has historical, cultural, and economic significance to New Mexico. Added to everything from fried breakfast food to traditional Mexican and American meals, red and green chile sauce is the signature of New Mexican cuisine. Not only is the chile pepper one of the official state vegetables, but also the village of Hatch in Southern New Mexico has dubbed itself the Chile Capital of the World. More than 30,000 people from across the country visit Hatch every Labor Day weekend for the annual Chile Festival.

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32. New York
> Most iconic product:
Apples

Home to more than 10 million apple trees, no state in the country grows a wider variety of apples than New York. In fact, many popular varieties of the fruit were developed in the state. Through cross breeding, the Cortland and Macoun variety were each developed in Geneva, New York in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and the Empire variety was developed at Cornell University in the 1940s. The apple is the official fruit of the state.

33. North Carolina
> Most iconic product:
Textiles

North Carolina is one of the nation’s top manufacturing states, especially compared to other Southern states. The textile industry, in particular, has held a significant role in the state’s economy. Although U.S. textile manufacturing activity has waned since the 1970s, the industry has undergone a resurgence. In 2013, nine textile companies announced plans to expand their operations in North Carolina.

34. North Dakota
> Most iconic product:
Sunflowers

North Dakota is currently known for its burgeoning shale oil industry, but the state is also one of the nation’s largest agricultural producers. The state produces large shares of the nation’s wheat, canola, barley, and bean crop. It also accounts for the largest sunflower crop in the United States. More than 40% of the country’s sunflowers are grown in the state each year.

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35. Ohio
> Most iconic product:
Rubber

Ohio, like its neighbors Michigan, Indiana, and Pennsylvania, was once part of the nation’s manufacturing core. One of Ohio’s specialties was rubber. The city of Akron — at the time known as the rubber capital of the world — was the center of the state’s rubber industry. The city was home to large-scale factories of tire manufacturers B.F. Goodrich, Goodyear, and Firestone.