A chain of 'family restaurants' based in Japan's northern island of Hokkaido has introduced a whale burger onto its menu.

Lucky Pierrot's whale burgers went on sale just two days after the International Whale Commission upheld a moratorium on commercial whaling.

The International Whaling Commission turned down a Japanese proposal for the IWC to allow coastal whaling. However Japan has tonnes of whale meat on sale, made available from kills it is allowed to make under its whale research program.

Japan, which has whale meat on school menus, too, had been lobbying to remove the ban that has been in place since 1986.