Commissioner Leonhardt Calls on West Virginia to Celebrate Dairy Month

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt and the West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA) are calling on residents of the Mountain State to support local dairies and connected industries during National Dairy Month. Originally established in 1937, National Dairy Month is held annually in June to highlight the impact of the dairy industry in the United States. West Virginia currently has 32 dairy farms, two dairy processing plants and one aseptic dairy processing plant.

“We don’t often stop to think about the dairy products we eat each day,” said Commissioner Leonhardt. “From milk to ice cream, creamer for our coffee to the cheese we put on our tacos, dairy is a big part of our diet. West Virginia dairy farmers are helping feed our families. With the addition of Mountaintop Beverage, West Virginia’s dairy industry has a unique opportunity to grow. This Dairy Month, I encourage you to get to know your local dairy farmer.”

The WVDA, Farm Credit of the Virginias, Horizon Farm Credit, Mountaintop Beverage and the American Dairy Association Mideast, on behalf of West Virginia dairy farmers, are sponsoring Dairy Days at GoMart Ballpark in Charleston on Friday, June 9, and at the Monongalia County Ballpark in Morgantown on Friday, June 16. There will be various dairy products available and some fun activities. The Department is also asking the public to support West Virginia dairy by purchasing local ice cream, cheese and other byproducts.

“Since the Department took over the full regulation of milk and dairy products in West Virginia, we have worked with our producers to reduce regulations and foster innovation. As dairy consumption has plateaued in the United States, producers must look towards niche markets to connect with consumers. Our goal is to help valued-added industries, such as cheese production, and traditional dairy processing flourish in West Virginia,” Leonhardt said.

For a full list of dairy producers in West Virginia, go to:

For more information, contact Rachel Shockey at 304-558-2227 or

The West Virginia Department of Agriculture protects plant, animal and human health through a variety of scientific, regulatory and consumer protection programs. The Commissioner of Agriculture is one of six statewide elected officials who sits on the Board of Public Works.