Prisoners use potatoes as currency
In the wake of the proposed ban on smoking, inmates at Belmarsh are to adopt the humble ‘spud’ as the preferred medium of barter while in prison. One analyst explained: ‘There will be a period of adjustment in exchange rates and some quantitative easing involving oven chips, but we expect the ‘King Edward’ to become the gold standard for the prison economy’.
The ‘root vegetable coin’ offers the right balance of circulation, stable value and something that goes well with baked beans. The potato is unique in that it is loaded with complex carbohydrates and can be used as an improvised ‘shiv’ during a riot.