- Associated Press - Thursday, February 6, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The West Virginia Department of Agriculture is making 40 acres of Mason County farmland available for lease to organizations and individuals for commercial vegetable and small fruit production.

Agriculture Commissioner Walt Helmick made the announcement Wednesday. He said the project is one step in the process of encouraging more farm production in West Virginia, which consumes more than $7 billion annually in food but produces only about $675 million.

The property to be leased this summer is at the Lakin State Farm. Applications can be obtained by contacting Dwayne O’Dell, Bob Tabb or Jarrod Dean at 304-558-2210. The deadline for applications, which must include a business plan, is March 14.

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