When Sharon Meijland, owner of a vegetarian cafe in Cambridge, England put up a sign last week announcing that customers cannot pay with the new £5 note because it contains animal products, it created a huge outcry on social media.
Rainbow Cafe put up signs warning about the new note policy Nov 30, but Meijland said the online abuse has been “frightening.”
The polymer used in the notes contains tallow, a type of animal fat. That fact upset some vegetarians and vegans.
Hi @Jools_Orca there is a trace of tallow in the polymer pallets used in the base substrate of the polymer £5 notes
— Bank of England (@bankofengland) November 28, 2016
Meijland said in the News that the restaurant cannot accept the notes.
We sponsor the Vegan Fair and announced on Wednesday we would not be accepting the £5 notes because they are dubious ethically.
“We have been providing food for vegans for 30 years and have tried to be as ethical as we possibly can.
“We have been the runner up of the Best Ethical Restaurant category in the Observer Food Monthly award for the last five years.
Some reviewers on Yelp responded with comments that the policy was unreasonable, others were supportive.
Meijland said her staff supports the decision:
“I spoke to my staff on Wednesday about the new policy; the whole thing is very important.
“This is not just a restaurant, it’s a restaurant where tiny details like this are really important.
h/t: Cambridge News