Culture Magazine

Five Pounds V.s. Cow

By V3rv0se

This week at Harper Morgan English, we’re talking about cow in our money.

It has been revealed that small amounts of animal product are being used in the production of the new five pound notes. This has lead to outrage and anger among vegetarians and vegans in the UK. Many people feel very strongly about this matter and have created an online petition to convince the Bank of England to stop using animal products in future notes.

This Vice article [1] by Morgan Harries estimates that the exact amount of animal product which is being used is a little more than half a cow. The petition to end this practice has over 100,000 signatures and the Morgan points out that this is a lot of trouble to go though to save one cow. It is claimed that 2.6 million cows are killed each year in the UK for food. Morgan points out that the situation seems unbalanced. She also mentions that there are many other petitions against animal cruelty which have far fewer signatures.

Here are some questions for you to think about;

Is it fair that the Bank of England didn’t consider the beliefs of so many people? Should they have attempted to use a different product regardless of how small the damage is? Given that people have no choice but to use the notes, is this a huge, offensive oversight?

Or, is all this an overreaction? As Morgan found, each note is 0.01% animal product. And given that there are much more pressing causes to consider, is this really a big enough deal to spend so much time on?

We’re always interested in hearing what you think. Let us know by commenting, sharing and joining the conversation!

[1] B2+ read here

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