Frequently (and not so frequently) Asked Questions
BRIEF: Are poke berries harmful to humans?
Are poke berries harmful to humans?
Yes. Raw berries, even if ripe, can be harmful if you eat enough of them and the seeds inside the berry are toxic.
However, as a young boy I use to harvest them for a neighbor lady who made excellent jelly from them. Perhaps the boiling of them in the making of the jelly neutralized the berries-if they are at all posionous.
Boiling them and removing the seed would render them pretty harmless, so the jelly was probably OK.
I'm also curious about the possibility of using poke berries for making wine.
Children have been killed drinking the juice from the raw berries. I wouldn't try the wine.