In pictures: Fukuppy and other Japanese mascots

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Fukuppy is just one of hundreds of cute mascots from Japan

Earlier this week the world was introduced to the unfortunately-named Fukuppy, a happy egg with names, who is the new mascot for Japanese refrigerator company Fukushima Industries.

Although the company was not linked to the disaster, the irony of the cute little egg's name was not lost on people. Fukushima Industries has now removed the Western version of the name. For the record, it's pronounced Foo koo pee.  

Japan is renowned for its obsession with the cute and cuddly and mascots are a popular fixture in the nation. Everything from train stations to television broadcasters have their own creature to represent them. Even a prison in Asahikwa prison recently adopted a mascot called Katakkuri-chan to help shed its image as a dark and oppressive place.

Following on from Fukuppy, here are some of the weirdest and most wonderful mascots from Japan. To be fair Japanese mascots are far more interesting than just the bog-standard logo.

Click here or on 'view gallery' to see more images

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