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Beekeeping has long been practiced in the East Bay, for all kinds of reasons: Some want their gardens to be more productive, others like the beekeeping jumpsuit. Still others are worried about the bees’ survival, in the face of colony collapse disorder and the massive disappearance of bees in commercial beekeeping. For whatever reason, there’s not one but three local stores now selling beekeeping equipment, and it’s becoming easier and easier to find local honey, with not only longtime honey sellers like Bee Happy in Oakland collecting honey from all over the East Bay, but places like Homestead Apothecary in Oakland and Biofuel Oasis in Berkeley selling honey collected just a few blocks away from their stores. All of this amounts to not just more food for locals, but also, hopefully, more protection of the bee population. So continues the happy marriage of two causes the East Bay has historically held dear — environmentalism and sustainable agriculture — supported by sugar cravings as much as anything.
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