In its original form, margarine was merely cheap and no more convenient than butter. The first margarine was developed by a French chemist, Hippolyte Mège-Mouriès, in response to a national competition in 1867 to find a cheaper alternative to butter. The name came from the Greek word for pearl, as margarine was whitish rather than yellow. It was based on animal fats such as suet. In Britain, an improved version, developed by the Dutch butter merchants Jan and Anton Jurgens was marketed as “butterine” until 1887, when that was forbidden. In 1903, the development of a process called hydrogenation by the French chemist Paul Sabatier made it possible to use vegetable oils as the main ingredient of margarine. By bubbling hydrogen through liquid oils in the presence of nickel, which acts as a catalyst, the oils are hardened. However, hydrogenation also had the effect of changing unsaturated oils to saturated fats, which are less easily metabolized. The introduction of healthier margarines that were high in polyunsaturated oils, such as sunflower or safflower oil, had the added benefit of producing a softer, more spreadable margarine. The convenience of spreading “straight from the fridge” was used as a major selling point for soft margarines. The more recent spreadable butters are actually a more or less equal mixture of butter and vegetable oils.