London, December 3, 2016: “Hindu Forum of Britain (HFB), an umbrella group of Hindu organisations and temples in the UK, has called on the Bank of England to withdraw the new 5-pound note from circulation because it uses animal fat,” according to PTI report.
HFB said that move was not “malicious” but a result of “ignorance” and the notes should be made “Karma-free” as soon as possible.
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Shree Gauridas, spiritual commissioner of HFB and a director of the UK’s ISKCON temple said, “Saving and sharing wealth (the Goddess of fortune) in currency tainted by unnecessary harm to animals is somewhat of an oxymoron.”
They are encouraging people to sign a petition to call for the withdrawal of the notes as vegans and vegetarians continued to express outrage at the use of tallow, a substance derived from animal fat, on the bank notes.
A petition titled “Remove tallow from bank notes” has gathered nearly 126,000 signatures. It will be delivered to the Bank of England when it hits 150,000, which emerged in a Twitter response earlier this week.
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It reads, “The new 5 pound notes contain animal fat in the form of tallow. This is unacceptable to millions of vegans and vegetarians in the UK. We demand that you cease to use animal products in the production of currency that we have to use.”
The new notes with became legal tender in September this year.
In the university town of Cambridge, a vegetarian cafe is refusing to accept the new notes and Sharon Meijland, owner of Rainbow Cafe, has put up signs warning customers about the policy.
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“Tallow’s an animal product isn’t it? Our whole business is based around not having anything like that on the premises. Although the same person doesn’t handle the money that handles the food, that’s not really the point,” she said.
The Bank of England says that it will look into ways of removing the substance from the supply chain.
A spokesperson said,”We are aware of some people’s concerns about traces of tallow in our new five pound note. We respect those concerns and are treating them with the utmost seriousness.”
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