(Reuters) - The Bank of England said its supplier of currency, Innovia, is working toward removing the use of animal fat in the production of its new plastic five pound note after objection raised by thousands of vegetarians.

The bank said it did not know about traces of tallow, which contains animal fats, in the production of the currency when it signed the contract with Innovia.

"We are aware of some people’s concerns about traces of tallow in our new five pound note. We respect those concerns and are treating them with the utmost seriousness," the bank said in a statement.

Earlier, the Bank of England confirmed that tallow is used in the production of the new currency, after an online petition against its use in the notes, started by campaigner Doug Maw, was signed by more 100,000 supporters in less than two days.

"This is unacceptable to millions of vegans and vegetarians in the UK," Maw wrote in the online petition.

(Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)