Anyone who has purchased Pure Missouri Ozark Country Sorghum should immediately throw the product out, according to a public health warning issued Tuesday by the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), the Johnson County Public Health Department, and the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals (DIA).
Tests by the State Hygienic Laboratory (SHL) at the University of Iowa indicate the product has “extremely high nitrate levels, which can be hazardous especially if consumed by infants and children,” says DIA Food and Consumer Safety Bureau Chief Steven Mandernach.
Pure Missouri Ozark Country Sorghum is produced by Ozark Country Sorghum in Dunnegan, MO,
IDPH and Johnson County health officials are investigating two cases of possible methemoglobinemia associated with the consumption of this sorghum. “The bottom line is that no one should eat this product,” said IDPH Medical Director Caitlin Pedati. “If you have it in your kitchen, you should throw it away.”
Signs and symptoms of methemoglobinemia include shortness of breath, cyanosis, confusion, headache, fatigue, exercise intolerance, weakness, and dizziness. People with methemoglobinemia should be evaluated by a clinician and are sometimes treated with supplemental oxygen and methylene blue  1 percent solution.
State officials are working to have the product recalled and to further investigate it with their counterparts in Missouri. Officials with the Johnson County Public Health Department, too, are investigating an illness associated with the consumption of sorghum. Sorghum is often used by some people in the preparation of infant formulas and toddler foods.
The sorghum is packaged in one-pint and one-quart jars and may be available at grocery stores, specialty retail stores, and country stores, or available from online suppliers. Consumers should not return the product to the place of purchase; it should be thrown away.
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