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Do You Have Maple Moolah?

27 May 2013

Canadians are resistant to change, and if you don’t believe us, just look at the controversy surrounding the new bank notes the Bank of Canada has been unleashing since late last year. The newest controversy in the bank note debacle? Whether or not those notes smell like maple syrup.

The Bank of Canada has received hundreds of emails either asking if the maple syrup scent they were smelling was supposed to be on the bills, or asking why they got defunct bills, with no smell on them at all.

“They all have a scent which I’d say smells like maple?” one email said, “Please advise if this is normal?”

Another confused citizen said, “I would like to know once and for all if these bills are in fact scented, as I do detect a hit of maple when smelling the bill.”

And there were others that didn’t smell anything at all on their bills – and they want the Bank to do something about it!

“The note lost its maple smell,” said one email. “I strongly suggest the Bank increases the strength of the maple smell.”

After another had also noticed that their bills smelled like nothing but maybe a little bit of plastic and ink, wrote to the Bank explaining so, but practically begging them to “confirm or bust this myth.”

The idea that we actually have Maple Moolah here in Canada is one that’s been going around ever since the $100 bill was introduced.

But one creator of perfume in Vancouver says that she believes that some can smell it and some cannot because the bills must be slightly warmed before releasing the maple smell. She says that one of her friends took a bill from his back pocket and asked her to smell it with her eyes closed. She could detect the maple scent at once.

“I do think heat has something to do with activating the smell. Scratching will create some friction but my friend’s warm butt is likely the activator,” she says.

That might make sense too, as many have said that the bills don’t actually smell unless you scratch them.

The Bank however, is claiming that no smell has been added to the notes.

This isn’t the first time the new bills have sparked controversy in Canada. First there was the opinion of the people that the woman on the new bills looked Asian rather than Canadian, an issue that the Bank fixed before the notes were released.

Residents have also written into the Bank claiming that the bills can melt when exposed to high temperatures, such as when they’re placed in the dryer; and that the maple leaf on the new $20 bill isn’t a Canadian maple, but rather the foreign and invasive Norwegian maple. The Bank has denied both claims.

What they haven’t denied is the one thing that everybody has noticed about the bills – they constantly stick together, making them more difficult to count and manage. The Bank doesn’t deny this one, but does say this is a problem that is found with any new currency, and that over time as the bills are handled more, this will become less of an issue.

What do you think? Have you given your money a sniff lately? And do you have some Maple Moolah lying around?

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