Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in smoked food products and commercial liquid smoke flavourings

Food Addit Contam. Sep-Oct 1993;10(5):503-21. doi: 10.1080/02652039309374174.


Smoked foods including turkey, pork, chicken, beef and fish products were screened for the presence of carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Eighteen commercial liquid smoke flavourings and seasonings were also analysed. Total PAH concentrations in smoked meat products ranged from 2.6 micrograms/kg in a cooked ham sample to 29.8 micrograms/kg in grilled pork chops, while those in fish products ranged from 9.3 micrograms/kg in smoked shrimp to 86.6 micrograms/kg in smoked salmon. Total concentrations of the carcinogenic PAHs (benzo[a]anthracene, benzo[b]fluoranthene, benzo[a]pyrene, dibenzo[a,h]anthracene, and indeno[1,2,3-c,d]pyrene) ranged from non-detectable in several meat products to 7.4 micrograms/kg in grilled pork chops, and from 0.2 micrograms/kg in trout to 16.0 micrograms/kg in salmon. In liquid smoke flavourings and seasonings, total PAH concentrations ranged from 6.3 to 43.7 micrograms/kg, with the carcinogenic PAHs ranging from 0.3 to 10.2 micrograms/kg.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cooking
  • Fishes
  • Flavoring Agents / analysis*
  • Food Contamination
  • Meat
  • Polycyclic Compounds / analysis*
  • Poultry
  • Smoke / analysis*


  • Flavoring Agents
  • Polycyclic Compounds
  • Smoke