A sperm whale full of ambergris has been washed up on the beach in Holland. The quantity is 83Kg, and will keep perfumers who use it as a fixative going for years. The origin of ambergris was unknown for many years. It was found from time to time on beaches. Its scarcity made it enormously valuable.
Once industrial scale whaling got underway its origin in the digestive system of whales became obvious. It also led to the pursuit of sperm whales, with disastrous consequences for their numbers. To combat this trade in ambergris is banned in many countries.
The details can be found here.