Food poisoning is one of the most addressed health issues and has raised notable concerns. Histamine is the biogenic amine responsible for scombroid poisoning, which is due to the histidine decarboxylation by bacterial decarboxylases in various types of fish and fish products. The present investigation was conducted to measure the concentration of histamine in canned fish samples of tuna in oil (n = 18), tuna in oil with vegetables (n = 15), tuna in brine (n = 9), kilka in oil (n = 9), sardine in oil (n = 3), and mackerel in oil (n = 6) collected from markets in Tehran, Iran. Histamine concentrations were determined with a high-performance liquid chromatography device equipped with a UV detector. For method validation, the correlation coefficient (R2), recovery percentage, relative standard deviation for repeatability, limit of detection, and limit of quantification were 0.99, 82%, 1.3%, 1.5 mg/kg, and 5 mg/kg, respectively. Histamine was detected in 46.6% of the samples, and 18.3% of samples exceeded the histamine limit stipulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (50 mg/kg). The overall mean histamine concentration was 17.36 ± 15.44 mg/kg, with a range of 0 to 88 mg/kg. A significant difference in histamine concentration was found between canned tuna in oil and canned tuna in brine (P < 0.05). However, no significant difference in histamine concentration was found among samples of canned tuna in brine, canned sardine in oil, canned kilka in oil, and canned mackerel in oil. Because of the high histamine concentrations detected in some brands of Iranian canned tuna, precise control programs, hazard analysis critical control point systems, and good hygiene practices should be implemented.
Histamine concentrations in canned fish samples in Tehran were investigated.
Histamine was detected in 46.6% of the samples, 18.33% of which exceeded the regulatory limit.
The difference in histamine concentration between canned tuna in oil and canned tuna in brine was significant.