A remote Japanese town has taken to selling bear meat from a vending machine.
Bear attacks are an increasing problem in parts of rural Japan due to a shortage of food in the forests that brings the animals into inhabited areas to forage.
“The bears can be dangerous when they come into town, so hunters will set up traps or shoot them,” said Daishi Sato, who placed the vending machine outside his ‘soba’ noodle shop near the railway station in Semboku, 400 km (250 miles) north of Tokyo in Akita prefeacture.
Asian black bears are listed as vulnerable, but not critically so, and it is legal to eat bear in Japan.
“Bear meat isn’t very common so we want tourists who come to visit the town to buy it,” Sato said.