News of a £10 note that would replace Charles Darwin with a picture of author Jane Austen was welcomed by many - Austen’s the only woman, other than the actual Queen, on any British bank note. Like the new fiver, they’re also waterproof and tear-proof, and some of them are worth like, £80,000. So far, so good.
Except, it turns out, other elements of the note are not so good. Not according to vegans, anyway.
Just like the new fiver, the new £10 note contains tallow, a substance made from animal fat and normally used to make candles or soap.
“There is a trace of tallow in the polymer pellets used in the base substrate of the polymer £5 notes,” the Bank of England said on Twitter.
And vegans and veggies are nooooot happy about it. A petition asking that the new note removes tallow has already had nearly 140,000 signatures, with Doug Maw attacking the Bank of England’s “astonishing arrogance, lack of direction and failure to comply with basic human rights.”
“There are vegan friendly alternatives to any product you could name,” he said. “When it is our currency there is zero choice involved: we HAVE to use it. This element of compulsion or force is what makes the Bank Notes issue unique.”
“Similarly, Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and other religious groups are highly offended by the use of a cow and are being forced to act against their devout beliefs.”
“My primary concern as a vegan is for the animals. It’s not about hurting the feelings of people but the casual way in which animals are used without a second thought throughout our culture.”
Elsewhere, vegan cafes across the country have boycotted the note - one Soho cafe told the Metro that they “don’t accept the £5 note, we won’t accept the £10 note.”
“Soon it will be trouble, we won’t be able to accept any notes. It is hard. But it’s against our values,” they explained.
If this wasn’t enough, the new tenner has previously come under fire for featuring an ‘incorrect’ quote from Austen’s 1813 classic Pride and Prejudice. The line reads “”I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!” and yet the character who utters it actually has very little interest in reading, which you’d know it - y’know, you’d actually read the book.
You also need to be careful with the new plastic notes - because you could get ’Winstoned’. Earlier this year, after the fiver was introduced, cocaine users complained that the sharp plastic edges were cutting their noses. Bad news for vegans AND recreational drug users alike.
Shall we just abandon the whole thing? Stick to the credit cards people.