The economic gains due to honey bee ( Apis mellifera L.) agricultural pollination are evaluated. The method of analysis focuses on the gains to consumers through lower prices for crops that are benefited by honey bees. Economic demand functions for the major agricultural crops that are pollinated by bees are estimated. The amounts by which the yields of pollinated crops are increased are estimated from a variety of sources. In the final step, the surplus realized by consumers of these crops that would be lost if honey bees were depleted is determined. The annual social gains are estimated to range between $1.6 and $5.7 billion.
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