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 The WVDA Makes Substantial Improvements to Commodity Distribution Center

4/13/2020

RIPLEY, W.Va. - Since 2017, the West Virginia Department of Agriculture
(WVDA) has made significant improvements to the WVDA Commodity Distribution
Center located in Ripley, WV. The center is responsible for distribution of food
provided by USDA programs to West Virginia schools and food banks serving all 55
counties in the state. In total, $1.4 million worth of improvements, mostly federally
funded, have been made.

“The WVDA is in a unique position, compared to other agencies, as we manage all
repairs to our facilities internally. This allows us to identify potential problems early
and start working towards a solution much faster,” said Commissioner of Agriculture
Kent Leonhardt. “Our goal from day one has been to find ways to modernize our
facilities so the Department can better serve the agriculture community for years to
come.”

In the last three years, the Department has made electrical upgrades, installed a new
roof, made repairs to the loading dock, implemented new technological advances and
compiled plans for future expansions for the Ripley facility. The list of improvements
includes the fixing a foundational slip to a freezer wall that occurred this past summer.
Funding for the repair is being covered by federal grants, as well as aid from
Speedway.

“We thank Speedway for their assistance on this project. Making the structural fixes to
the facility protects the many programs we host including the feeding of many of the
children who attend West Virginia public schools. With Speedway’s help and funding
approved by the USDA, very little state dollars were necessary for this project,”
Leonhardt said.

In total, the Ripley Facility oversaw $34.2 million worth of food commodities in FY
19. The food distributed was received by 725 schools, 337 food pantries, 68 agencies
working with senior citizens, 60 child and adult care programs and 46 summer feeding
programs.

For more information or questions, contact Crescent Gallagher at cgallagher@wvda.us or 304-380-3922.



Contact Information

Crescent Gallagher - cgallagher@wvda.us, 304-380-3922 or 304-558-3708