Assuming a price of $7.50 in 1975 adjusting for inflation a queen should have gone for $32.49 in 2013 in US$. Can anybody verify the cost of queens in 1975? I have heard anecdotal reports of $6-$8 bucks per queen.
This seems counter intuitive to me. How could Varroa, CCD, and a tighter bee supply contribute to relatively cheaper queens? I feel an economics lesson coming on. Note the demand curve for queens should be relatively inelastic. There are no substitutes for queens. This means demand should not fluctuate very much with price increase. Efficiency in production could be a possible factor. Are we really that much better at making queens now than in the 70's or is actually more difficult now? Are there more or fewer suppliers now?
Was debating putting this in the general bee forum. Beekeepers often under value their pollination services (see some of Burgett's studies); have we made the same mistake with queens??