West Virginia Grown: Local Agriculture's Impact and Outlook
West Virginia Grown: Local Agriculture’s Impact and Outlook By Kent Leonhardt, West Virginia Agricultural Commissioner Agriculture has been a cornerstone of the U.S. economy since Pilgrims first arrived at Plymouth Rock. With some of the best farmland in the world, the United States is the second largest agriculture producer right behind China. Agriculture and related industries contribute over $1 trillion to the U.S. gross domestic product each year. In West Virginia, the impact of agricultural commodities is equally significant, accounting for $800 million annually to our economy. If timber products are included, that number jumps to nearly $5 billion. According to the latest U.S. Census of Agriculture, the Mountain State’s approximately 24,000 farm operations rank 25th in poultry and egg production, 27th in Christmas trees, 30th in fruits, tree nuts and berries, and 38th in cattle.
November 9, 2021