New British bank notes fall foul of vegetarians

A spokesperson for the Bank of England said it had only recently become aware of the issue, noting that the polymer used to make the cash is provided by a company called Innovia Films. Amid the row a petition demanding the bank remove the animal fat gained more than 100,000 signatories. Polymer money is used in 24 countries, including Canada and Australia, which both confirmed to CNNMoney that their bills also contain animal fat.

Tallow, for those not clued into animal derivatives, is rendered suet, solid, white animal - usually cow - fat typically found near the kidneys and loins.

Vegans and vegetarians in England may be able to avoid personal consumption of animal products, but it will be harder for them to refrain from using the nation's new polymer five-pound bank note.

The plastic fivers entered circulation to much fanfare from the Bank in September.

"There is a trace of tallow in the polymer pellets used in the base substrate of the polymer 5-pound notes", the bank Tweeted on Monday.

The supplier of the new plastic £5 notes has been forced into a rethink after vegan and vegetarian campaigners complained that animal fat was used during the note's production process, reports The Guardian.

The new notes are said to have increased durability compared to the paper currency. "There has got to be other ways of making money without using animal products".

A petition to scrap new £5 notes because they contain animal fat has gained nearly 15,000 signatures so far and will be delivered to the Bank of England.

Earlier today we noted the recent outcry in Britain over the country's new £5 note, which is made using a small amount of animal fat.

Doug Maw, a 47-year-old vegan who started the petition, said the use of tallow was "incredibly disrespectful".

"Offensive and a disgrace to all vegans and vegetarians", said Clive Shrubsole.

The new flexible plastic notes are created to be cleaner, more secure and stronger.

A plastic 10-pound note featuring the author of "Pride and Prejudice", Jane Austen, is due to appear next year.