Irreplaceable in the 'silver' gelatin process, it's unavoidable. Harman can't keep eating the increased cost of raw material. The economics of it is unfortunate, but all of us will have to learn how to deal with it.
I am currently re-printing a ton of old negatives, and some of them on Ilford Warmtone paper. It's hard to justify the expense for me. Very very hard. Every time I order more 11x14 fiber paper, and pay 3 dollars per sheet, I look in the mirror and think I must be insane. And I only order one box at a time. It's all that I can afford. A box lasts me a couple of months, so I'm spending a thousand dollars a year on Ilford paper. This is petty cash compared to many other silver printers. I doubt someone like Bob Carnie spends less than that in one day of printing silver gelatin.
I'm not asking Mr Galley of Harman to defend their pricing; I understand why it is as it is. All I'm saying is that I don't know how long I can keep it up. There will be a time, shortly, where I can't afford this passion anymore, and that saddens me to no end. I'm sure there are others in my situation.