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With beekeeping popping up in cities like Denver, Cleveland, Minneapolis, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Washington D.C., and even on the White House lawn, it is surprising to find that honeybees have been severely depleted in recent years.

In the past several years, colony collapse disorder (CCD) has become a frequent occurrence nationwide, in which bees leave the hive, leading to the death of the colony.

In a recent study performed by the United States Department of Agriculture, 26 percent of apiaries surveyed across the nation suffered losses due to CCD.

The causes OF CCD are still being researched.

The disappearance of bees is one reason Gannon started his backyard hives in City Island. But mostly, it’s a hobby.

City Island Gold, the name his son came up with five years ago when Gannon first started his hive, is only sold at his neighbor’s bakery, Sugar & Spice.

He also likes to give it to neighbors and friends, all of whom were skeptical of his project at first.

“You just ply them with honey,” he laughed, “and educate them.”

Gannon also claims a spoonful of local honey can help clear seasonal allergies and his neighbors come “back in droves,” he said.

Now “local people are proud of something,” he said. They are proud of his honey, but more so of their local honey—their delicious, nutritious, liquid gold.

Nicole Marimon studies journalism at New York University.