Today, food safety and quality are some of the main concerns of consumer and health agencies around the world. Our current lifestyle and market globalization have led to an increase in the number of people affected by food poisoning. Foodborne illness and food poisoning have different origins (bacteria, virus, parasites, mold, contaminants, etc.), and some cases of food poisoning can be traced back to chemical and natural toxins. One of the toxins targeted by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is the biogenic amine histamine. Biogenic amines (BAs) in food constitute a potential public health concern due to their physiological and toxicological effects. The consumption of foods containing high concentrations of biogenic amines has been associated with health hazards. In recent years there has been an increase in the number of food poisoning cases associated with BAs in food, mainly in relation to histamines in fish. We need to gain a better understanding of the origin of foodborne disease and how to control it if we expect to keep people from getting ill. Biogenic amines are found in varying concentrations in a wide range of foods (fish, cheese, meat, wine, beer, vegetables, etc.), and BA formation is influenced by different factors associated with the raw material making up food products, microorganisms, processing, and conservation conditions. Moreover, BAs are thermostable. Biogenic amines also play an important role as indicators of food quality and/or acceptability. Hence, BAs need to be controlled in order to ensure high levels of food quality and safety. All of these aspects will be addressed in this review.
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