The European Central Bank (ECB) recently put new bank notes, in €100 and €200 denominations, into circulation. Previously, banknotes released by the Bank Of England (BOE) in 2016 and 2017 contained tallow (rendered beef or mutton fat) and caused ongoing controversy from animal-rights groups and religious organizations that argued the notes would be an unavoidable breach of their ethical beliefs. Due to such concerns, the BOE committed to looking for alternatives for the £20 denominations to be printed in 2020, and even considered substituting tallow with coconut or palm oil. To avoid similar controversy, the ECB purposefully avoided all animal products, instead constructing the new 100 and 200 euro bills with 100-percent cotton fiber. “The euro system is strongly committed to maintaining and improving the sustainability of the euro banknotes and the raw materials used,” a spokeswoman for the ECB told the New York Times. The new notes have a shinier finish and more security features, and are more durable than their predecessors. The width of the bills has also been reduced, creating a uniform width that makes it easier to fit the bills into a wallet, and reduces wear and tear.

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