Wholesale Megalodon Teeth "Price Per Pound" issues
While "Price Per Pound" can be a good rough guide there are issues
I sell some Megalodon teeth wholesale in larger quantities. Many sellers use "Price Per Pound" and in this article I highlight some of the issues with that model that need to be kept in mind in order to ensure fair and consistent pricing when purchasing wholesale megalodon teeth.
Many people who buy and sell megalodon teeth in large or wholesale quantities use weight to determine final price. A price per pound is agreed upon along with a quantity that both parties are comfortable with to arrive at a final price. While this method is often used it has some significant downsides that both buyers and sellers need to be aware of, in this article I will highlight some of the issues.
On paper per pound pricing seems like it makes sense, and for large volumes of broken teeth it does to save time as the price difference of a "frag" or part of a broken tooth (see below) is represented pretty well by weight due to quality being low across the category and the difference in price between one "frag" and another of the same weight is minimal.
Once you get above 3/4 teeth or 75% complete teeth the per pound system falls apart pretty quickly. Some people still use it as it seems quick/easy/fair, but the issue is in size and quality, and most wholesale sellers like the system simply because it allows them to adjust the dials while still having the "price per pound" stay the same. For instance if you took 100x "4 inch teeth that were say 85% complete teeth there would be a lot of variability and even a novice fossil collector could pick out the top 10 and bottom 10 quality teeth from that group pretty accurately, along with those teeth not all being exactly 4.00".
You can tear apart "price per pound" pricing really quickly by getting a quote for 10lbs of 4.5" 85% percent complete teeth, and 10lbs of 2" 85% complete meg teeth. The number of 2" teeth you get per pound is so much higher and the actual cost per tooth makes that pricing model fall apart very quickly.
The other issue comes when there is a significant range of what people call "good / commercial / complete / etc" teeth, even if you got 100 tooth sellers and resellers together in a room and had each grade 1000 4" megs and pull out only 100 of those teeth that they considered true "complete teeth", even if by some miracle you got all 100 sellers to pick more or less the same 100 out of 1000 teeth, within those 100 "complete / average / commercial" teeth there would be some teeth that are better than others, and therefore should have a higher or lower price. For this reason I price teeth individually so one buyer doesn't get the top half of those 100 85” teeth teeth and the next person gets the bottom half. As far as people keeping 85% teeth at a consistent price over a long period of time, they simple slide the quality scale towards the bottom half of those 100 85% grade teeth a bit so your "per pound price" stays the same but what you are actually getting keeps up with current market value/inflation/etc.
A couple of quick examples below.
First are up these two large, nice megs, seen above.
They both are in really good shape but both have a very small enamel ding below the burlette on the right side, so we are going to say these teeth from a quality perspective are VERY close, maybe a 5% quality difference. I picked these two teeth out for this example out of the high quality section of my inventory because it is tough to get two 90%+ teeth to have the damage in the exact same spot etc, but the same theory applies to lower quality teeth.
As far as size goes they are VERY close in size being 5.81 and 5.71" so .1" (2.5mm) off in size or less than a 3% difference in size. So if we say these teeth based on the primary two criteria that retail and wholesale buyers look at for pricing a tooth we can say these two teeth are extremely close.
Now we look at the weight. One is 9.5oz and the other is 1lb 4.8oz (20.8 oz)
That means one tooth is over twice the weight of the other. (2.19x)
I would never, but for simple math say I priced these teeth at $1,000 a pound. They would absolutely be the same quality category, and the same size category, but one would cost $593 and the other would cost $1,300 simply going by size/quality categories and using weight as the primary metric. Not fair at all to you as a wholesale buyer in my opinion as I don't think there is any way you are going to be able to sell one of those teeth for 2.19x the cost of the other. The heavy tooth is wider and would likely command a higher price, but nowhere near 2.19x higher.
I know retail buyers would not pay 2.19 times the price for the larger tooth, it is wider and should have a bit higher price in my opinion, but about a 20-40% price difference depending what the other side looks like etc. but certainly not 2.19 times more.
Next an example of smaller megalodon teeth.
To further illustrate this we have three teeth that are VERY close in size and weight. All are around 2.7" long, all are just under 3oz. The big difference obviously is quality.
Looking at these three teeth it is obvious the quality difference, but keep in mind that between these three quality landmarks there is a ton of quality range in-between.
So imagine instead of these 3 teeth ranging from bad to OK to great as shown above, there are 30 teeth with the one on the left above being the worst, and the one on the right above being the best. Should 5-10 of those teeth spanning a fairly significant quality range all be priced the same because they had the same weight? Pricing teeth that way by weight is quick and easy, but it leaves a ton of variability and makes it so pricing is not consistent, as there is a ton of variability in tooth quality, as no two are the same.
The same is true for 3/4 teeth, as you can see below the two teeth are almost the exact same weight (3.56oz and 3.53oz) but one is in significantly better condition that the other. Examples like these highlight why purchasing from a reputable wholesale megalodon dealer is important.
Yet another example of two teeth that should be worth very close to the same on the wholesale or retail market, but one is twice the weight of the other.
Sometimes people will ask for the price per pound and I simply take the weight of the lot I priced and the lot price and give them that per pound weight but also let them know I price teeth individually. Some people are used to purchasing teeth by the pound so knowing the per pound price helps them feel better knowing they are in the ballpark and not paying $500lb for 75% complete teeth. Price per pound can be helpful for ballpark price estimates but for fair and consistent pricing the price per pound model leaves a lot of variability that often does not benefit the wholesale megalodon tooth buyer.
The price per pound model definitely has its flaws, it is a model a lot of wholesale megalodon sellers like because it lets them adjust sales to their benefit by using the price per pound method, which is a really bad metric. Like in the example above, two teeth that measure the same size, are the same quality and when priced individually would have maybe a 35% price difference, when done via weight you end up with one "costing" 2.19 times more than the other using the "price per pound" model.
While using the price per pound model to buy or sell megalodon teeth is helpful for getting a ballpark idea of price or estimate large quantities of teeth being purchased as the quality of the teeth to up the effectiveness of the wholesale megalodon price per pound model goes down.
Even for broken teeth or "frags" the price per pound model is far from perfect, see the example below of two broken megalodon teeth with simular weights but drasticially different conditions and values.
If you are interested in purchasing
Wholesale megalodon teeth you can find them on the Wholesale page of my website, there you will find some information so you can request a quote.
To summarize if you want to use the price per pound model to buy broken megalodon teeth that is often the most efficient way, however the price per pound model is best used as a secondary pricing metric when teeth are mostly complete.
If you would like to buy individual megalodon teeth and other fossilized shark teeth you can find them on my Store page.