Canned tuna in the US has been proven to be safe by the country's Food and Drug Administration (FDA) following concerns over mercury levels.

The United States Tuna Foundation (USTF) announced the results, which showed canned tuna had mercury levels lower than the national allowance.

USTF executive director David Burney said: "FDA's latest findings about mercury levels in canned tuna should end the debate over whether canned tuna is a safe and healthy food for all Americans. No one is at risk from the minute amounts of mercury in any form of canned tuna."

The USTF said it is using the updated FDA test data to refute the series of misleading articles in the Chicago Tribune about mercury levels in seafood.

According to FDA results for fish and shellfish, the average amount of mercury in light canned tuna remains at 0.12 parts per million (ppm), which is eight times lower than the 1.00-ppm FDA limit for commercial fish.

The FDA findings showed that when yellowfin is used in light canned tuna, the amount of mercury is very low. When the agency tested canned tuna containing yellowfin, the amount of mercury was 0.18 ppm, with the average for canned light tuna of 0.12 ppm.

Burney added: "Fish is an important part of a healthy diet, but unfortunately, its many health benefits are being overlooked by consumers worried about mercury levels in fish. From the standpoint of public health, the real risk for the public is not getting enough canned tuna and other types of fish in the diet."