United Kingdom 5-Pound Note Contains Animal Fat; Vegans Want An Overhaul

Vegetarians and vegans across Britain launched a petition on Monday after the Bank admitted on Twitter that its new plastic £5 notes contain tallow – a substance derived from animal waste.The Vegan Society said: “Tallow is a rendered form of beef or mutton fat, processed from suet”.”I don’t think anything will happen about what has already been made, but I just hope they produce new ones without using animal fats”, he said.”Polymer substrate used as a base for bank notes contains additives that help with the polymer manufacturing process, similar to many commercially available plastics”, it said in an emailed statement.Having initially played down the issue, the Bank of England subsequently updated its position as the clamour for change grew.It said: “We are now in active discussions with our suppliers for them to develop alternative additives using vegetable based ingredients”. It asks the Bank of England to exclude use of “animal products in the production of currency that we have to use”.Hosted on the Change.org website, it states that tallow is “unacceptable to millions of vegans, vegetarians, Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and others in the UK”.Governor Mark Carney said of the new note: “The use of polymer means it can better withstand being repeatedly folded into wallets or scrunched up inside pockets and can also survive a spin in the washing machine”.The bank has pledged to work closely with supplier Innovia Films, the company which prints the polymer bills, in order to find “potential solutions”.The Bank of England began issuing the polymer notes in September pledging they “last longer, stay cleaner and are harder to counterfeit than paper notes”.But Canada and the United Kingdom are not alone – Australia’s banknotes also contain traces of tallow, the country’s central bank confirmed to CNNMoney. However, considering the £10 note and the £20 note are both scheduled to use the same process by 2020, it’s not looking likely.

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