By Craig Howell, The Weirton Daily Times
WEIRTON, W.Va. — As West Virginia’s commissioner of agriculture, Kent Leonhardt understands the importance farming and related industries have on the state’s future.
“I’m always interested in what’s going on in agriculture in West Virginia,” Leonhardt explained during a visit to Weirton Thursday.
Leonhardt, who operates a farm in Monongalia County, was in the area to learn about some of the latest local agricultural efforts, including a growing hydroponics and aquaponics operation which provides educational opportunities for youth across the Tri-State Area, and an anticipated agricultural marketplace set to open in the city later this year.
“Agriculture is a great way to diversify the economy,” Leonhardt said, noting a focus on local farming helps to save energy and secure the nation’s supply chains, as well as providing more nutritious food. “West Virginia agriculture is good for health, good for our citizens, good for the environment and good for the economy.” …