Biogenic amines produced during fermentation may be harmful when ingested in high concentrations. As current regulations remain insufficient to ensure the safety of fermented vegetable products, the current study determined the risks associated with the consumption of kimchi by evaluating the biogenic amine concentrations reported by various studies. Upon evaluation, some kimchi products were found to contain histamine and tyramine at potentially hazardous concentrations exceeding the recommended limit of 100 mg/kg for both histamine and tyramine. The biogenic amines may have originated primarily from metabolic activity by microorganisms during fermentation, as well as from Jeotgal
(Korean fermented seafood) and Aekjeot
(Korean fermented fish sauce) products commonly used as ingredients for kimchi production. Many studies have suggested that Jeotgal
may contribute to the histamine and tyramine content in kimchi. Microorganisms isolated from kimchi and Jeotgal
have been reported to produce both histamine and tyramine. Despite the potential toxicological risks, limited research has been conducted on reducing the biogenic amine content of kimchi and Jeotgal
products. The regulation and active monitoring of biogenic amine content during kimchi production appear to be necessary to ensure the safety of the fermented vegetable products.
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