London: More than 12,000 people signed a petition today demanding the withdrawal of Britain's newly- issued plastic five-pound banknotes that are manufactured using animal fat.
Vegans and vegetarians have expressed outrage at the use of tallow, a substance derived from animal fat and used in candles and soaps, in the currency notes.
The petition, titled - "Remove tallow from bank notes" - will be delivered to the Bank of England once it hits 15,000 signatures.
It reads, "The new 5-pound notes contain animal fat in the form of tallow. This is unacceptable to millions of vegans & 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 an image of Britain's war-time Prime Minister Winston Churchill became legal tender in September.
The production process was revealed on Twitter in response to a question.
"There is a trace of tallow in the polymer pellets used in the base substrate of the polymer 5-pound notes," Bank of England had tweeted.
The new polymer five-pound note?is the first of the?Bank of England's notes not to be printed on paper.
The new flexible plastic notes are designed to be cleaner, more secure and stronger.