Reliable tests for the detection of fish in food products


Fish: A common allergen with global impact

Regulatory requirements for fish allergens

Fish must be declared as an allergenic ingredient in food products in accordance with the EU Directive (EC 1829/2003 and EC 1830/2002). Additionally, fish is one of the eight major allergens that must be declared in the USA and many other countries. This highlights the global recognition of fish as a significant allergen requiring strict regulatory compliance.

The diversity of fish allergies

The biodiversity in the oceans is immense, with the total number of fish species still not fully known. Fish allergies vary substantially depending on the region. People living in coastal areas, where seafood consumption is more common, are more likely to develop fish allergies compared to those in inland regions. This variability makes general risk management challenging.

Prevalence and causes of fish allergy

Fish allergy is widespread among both children and adults, making it a significant concern for public health. The primary cause of fish allergies is the protein parvalbumin, a potent allergen found in many types of fish. Reactions to this protein can range from mild symptoms to severe anaphylactic reactions, emphasizing the need for accurate detection and labeling.

Detection and differentiation of fish allergens

The DNA of bony fish can be detected in food products using real-time PCR technology. This method is highly reliable for identifying fish as an allergen, ensuring that even trace amounts can be accurately detected. Furthermore, real-time PCR can differentiate between individual types of fish, which is crucial for both allergen management and preventing food fraud. For instance, our Animal ID product line offers precise identification to verify the authenticity of fish products.

Challenges in fish allergy management

Managing fish allergies involves more than just detecting the presence of fish proteins. The wide variety of fish species and their varying allergenic potentials add complexity to allergen management strategies. Effective management requires a combination of accurate detection methods, thorough risk assessments, and stringent labeling practices to protect allergic consumers.

Comprehensive allergen testing solutions

To support food manufacturers in managing fish allergens, we provide a range of testing solutions. Our real-time PCR tests are designed for high sensitivity and specificity, ensuring reliable detection of fish DNA. These tests not only help in identifying fish allergens but also play a crucial role in verifying product authenticity and preventing mislabeling. By implementing robust testing protocols, manufacturers can comply with regulatory requirements and safeguard consumer health.

Key benefits of monitoring fish allergens

  • Consumer safety: Protects individuals with fish allergies from potentially severe allergic reactions by ensuring accurate detection and labeling of fish allergens in food products.
  • Regulatory compliance: Helps manufacturers comply with food allergen labeling regulations in the EU, USA, and other countries, ensuring that all fish-containing products are properly labeled.
  • Quality assurance: Maintains the integrity and safety of food products by accurately identifying and quantifying fish allergens, preventing accidental exposure.
  • Comprehensive detection: Utilizes advanced methods to detect fish allergens even in processed and filleted fish products, ensuring thorough monitoring throughout the production process.
  • Fraud prevention: Identifies and prevents food fraud by differentiating between various types of fish, ensuring that high-value fish are not substituted with cheaper alternatives.


Monitoring for fish allergens is essential for protecting consumer health, ensuring regulatory compliance, and maintaining product quality. By employing advanced detection methods, manufacturers can accurately identify and quantify fish allergens, preventing allergic reactions and ensuring the safety of their products. This proactive approach supports robust allergen management, upholds food safety standards, and fosters consumer trust in fish products.

Product portfolio

ProductDescriptionNo. of tests/amountArt. No.
SureFood® ALLERGEN Fish

The SureFood® ALLERGEN Fish is a real-time PCR for the direct, qualitative and / or quantitative detection of specific fish DNA sequences according to directive (EC) 1169/2011. The group of fishes contains about 30000 species. Due to the large …

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100 reactions S3610
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