Abstract A method for the determination of arsenic (As) in seafood by inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry with continuous hydride generation is described. Several analytical parameters have been investigated and optimised. The analytical features of the method (recovery, precision, accuracy and limit of detection) were calculated. Practical detection limit of 3.6 μg/kg fresh weight for As has been reached. The precision of the method expressed as relative standard deviation (R.S.D.) was in the range of 2.7–3.7% and the recovery percentage ranged from 98.4 to 101.8%. The reliability of the developed method was checked by analysing several certified reference materials. A complete mineralization was obtained for arsenobetaine (AsB) containing reference material with a mixture of nitric and sulphuric acids followed by adding hydrogen peroxide in an open digestion system. This method can be applied to routine analysis without any risks of interferences.