Renewed Push to Legalize Kratom in Wisconsin

In a recent development, a group of Republican lawmakers in Wisconsin is reigniting the debate over the legalization of kratom, a plant-based substance often used for pain relief and opioid withdrawal.

Spearheaded by Rep. Dave Murphy and backed by the American Kratom Association, the bill, known as AB 393, aims to legalize and regulate kratom in the state. This comes after a similar bill faced united opposition from law enforcement groups and was struck down in 2021.

Interestingly, at least one law enforcement group, the State Lodge Fraternal Order of Police, has shifted its stance from opposition to neutrality. The group’s president, Ryan Windorff, stated that kratom-related crimes are rare and that the issue should be left to healthcare experts and lawmakers. Both Rep. Murphy and bill co-sponsor Sen. Rachael Cabral-Guevera expressed optimism about bipartisan support for the current bill, signaling a potential turning point in the kratom legalization debate in Wisconsin.

Zachary officials approve ordinance to ban kratom products

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – Zachary is next on the list to ban kratom products in Louisiana.

Kratom, an herbal product from a tree in southeast Asia, has become quite prevalent in the United States. You can crush it, use it in tea, or take it as a supplement.

State Representative Gabe Firment and other lawmakers attempted to ban the product statewide but will now leave that up to city governments. Their fight against kratom is based on its opioid and stimulant-like effects.

“You know it’s becoming fairly widespread, and it’s also being abused and has proven to be quite dangerous,” Rep. Gabe Firment said.

Most recently, councilmembers in Zachary adopted an ordinance to ban the sale and possession of kratom products in that area.

“This doesn’t make any sense that they are going to criminalize people when this is a safe product when used responsibly,” Haddow said.

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Proposed Bill Would Legalize Kratom

A new bill introduced this week would legalize kratom, a stimulant made from the leaves of a tree native to Southeast Asia. A similar bill failed to pass in 2022, but the bill’s Republican authors are back at it. And if you’ve been on the edge of your seat waiting for Wisconsin lawmakers to legalize marijuana, you should also be paying attention to the story of this lesser-known medicinal plant.

Kratom most often takes the form of a powder, capsule, or tea that is derived from the leaves of a tree native to Southeast Asia where it is used in herbal medicine. People use kratom for its stimulant-like effects, mood enhancement, and pain relief. 

On Tuesday, a group of Republican lawmakers introduced Assembly Bill 393, which would legalize the manufacture, distribution, delivery, and possession of kratom. 

Read more at WortFM

American Kratom Association Issues Consumer Advisory, Urges FDA to Regulate Kratom in Wake of Product Liability Lawsuits

From Washington, D.C., via News21AM -— The American Kratom Association (AKA) issued another Consumer Advisory in response to recent wrongful death jury awards in Florida and elsewhere:

1. The American Kratom Association urges the Food and Drug Administration to immediately publish product manufacturing standards for kratom products that are sold to consumers and encourages the removal of kratom products that do not contain adequate labeling with recommended serving sizes, product ingredients and appropriate warnings on conditions of use.

2. Until the FDA implements a set of standards to protect consumers, the AKA advises kratom consumers not to purchase or consume kratom products that:

a. Have not been certified by an independent third-party lab to be free of dangerous contaminants or that contain adulterants that could be dangerous to consume.

Read the full story at the City Sentinel

Should Zachary outlaw kratom? Council to take up issue at Sept. 12 meeting

Zachary officials want to ban kratom in the city, citing concerns about the potential hazards associated with the controversial herbal substance.

The City Council unanimously introduced an ordinance prohibiting the sale and possession of kratom during its Aug. 22 meeting. If formally adopted at the council’s next meeting on Sept. 12, people caught with kratom in Zachary could face fines and jail time.

“This substance does not belong in our city,” said Council member Ambre DeVirgilio, who spearheaded the ordinance.

Kratom is the common name for a substance made from the leaves of Mitragyna speciosa, a tree native to Southeast Asia and a relative of the coffee plant. It can produce stimulant and euphoric effects.

“The DEA classifies kratom as a chemical of concern,“ DeVirgilio said. “The FDA has ruled that it has no medical use or benefit.”

Read more at The Advocate

Federal Lawmakers Are Preparing To Reintroduce Legislation To Regulate Kratom Amid Pushback To FDA-Proposed Ban

As federal lawmakers prepare to reintroduce a bill to regulate kratom, a former Trump administration drug czar stressed the need to beat back “misinformation” from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which has attempted to ban the substance in the U.S. and abroad.

Members of the American Kratom Association (AKA) said during a webinar Tuesday that they expect federal legislation to regulate the drug “will be filed shortly” in Congress and could be taken up later this session.

The text of the forthcoming bill “will be word-for-word the same” as congressional legislation introduced last session, said Mac Haddow, a senior fellow at AKA. The title, however, will be updated to the Kratom Consumer Protection Act, a nod to model legislation that AKA has been lobbying for at the state and federal levels.

Read more at Marijuana Moment

Does Kratom Need Tighter Regulation?

A few years ago, government agencies were debating how to handle kratom, a substance made from the leaves of a Southeast Asian tree, which was being used by millions of Americans for everything from pain relief to stress management. However, since then, efforts to regulate or ban kratom have largely fizzled.

In 2016, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced plans to make kratom a Schedule I drug, putting it in the same category as heroin and LSD. HHS initially issued a letter in support, which they later rescinded after public outcry. The DEA then changed course a few months later, though it still includes kratom in their Drugs of Abuse resource guide.

Read more at MedPage Today

North Carolina Committee Passes Bill to Regulate Kratom and Hemp-Derived Consumables

The House Committee on Finance has given a favorable report to House Bill 563, allowing it to be referred to the Rules, Calendar, and Operations Committee (RCOC), the last step before it can be considered by the full House of Representatives. The RCOC held a public hearing on the measure this morning.

According to its official summary, the measure would:

  • Regulate the sale and distribution of hemp-derived consumable products and kratom products.
  • Require a license to sell, distribute, or manufacture hemp-derived consumable products and kratom products.
  • Ban hemp-derived consumable products from school grounds.

The bill states that “Kratom is a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia whose leaves contain two psychoactive ingredients, mitragynine and 7-hydroxymytragynine. The crushed leaves are generally smoked, brewed with tea, or placed into gel capsules.”

Keep reading at The Marijuana Herald

Industry leaders call for regulation of kratom products

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) – More than 1.7 million Americans used the plant-extract kratom in 2021, according to surveys, but many are now concerned about the drug’s use and wide availability.

The American Kratom Association recently issued a consumer advisory about companies that don’t follow its standards.

The advisory followed reports of a Florida woman who died as a result of taking a product that didn’t follow the association’s standards.

Kratom is an extract from a plant called mitragyna speciosa from southeast Asia, a relative of the coffee plant.

It contains “mitragynine,” which, in lower doses, can combat fatigue and increase focus.

In higher doses, doctors say, the drug can act like a narcotic, activating the same receptors that opioids do. In fact, one of its common uses is to alleviate opioid withdrawal.

There is a risk of side effects, including liver toxicity, seizures, respiratory failure and substance use disorder.

Read more at KMOV4

Kratom becomes the latest age-restricted product in Florida. What to know

Like alcohol, cigarettes and lottery tickets, kratom is now another age-restricted product in Florida.

Gov. Ron DeSantis last month signed a bill where products containing the plant Mitragyna speciosa can only be sold or given to people older than 21. The law went into effect July 1. 

Kratom is from Southeast Asia and is part of the coffee family. The leaves contain two psychoactive ingredients. Consuming kratom in small amounts can lead to a stimulant effect, and in larger amounts, it acts as a sedative.

The plant’s effects are felt by consuming capsules or an extract, brewing it in a tea or by chewing on its leaves.

Read more at Detroit Free Press

Consumer Protection Group Advocates for Responsible Legislation of Kratom

Washington D.C.—The American Kratom Association (AKA) is raising awareness about efforts to safeguard the millions of Americans who use kratom products. The consumer protection group is working to:

  • prevent criminalization
  • enact proactive legislation to protect the rights of kratom consumers
  • ensure that consumers have access to safe products

About kratom

“Kratom is a plant native to Southeast Asia that has been used for centuries to help people improve their health and well-being,” said Mac Haddow, AKA Senior Fellow on Public Policy, in a press release. “Our goal is to educate all Americans with the truth about kratom— rom potential consumers to regulators and everyone in between.”

The benefits of kratom for chronic pain have been debated within the natural products industry. In a  column for WholeFoods Magazine, Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D., maintained that kratom has a lower risk than opiods.

Keep reading at WholeFoods Magazine

Advocates, State Rep. call for Kratom regulations

A legal and readily available opioid-like substance should be more heavily regulated in Glynn County, a local group of advocates say.

They are now asking the Glynn County Commission to take action to make Kratom more difficult for youth to get and are hoping a bill introduced in February by state Rep. Rick Townsend, R-St. Simons Island, will help to regulate it statewide.

Kratom is a tropical tree from the coffee family that is native to Southeast Asia. The National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIDA, said the herbal-based products derived from its leaves can have a range of effects on people, from acting as a stimulant at low doses to producing sedative-like impacts at higher doses.

Read more at The Brunswick News

American Medical Association Promotes Psychedelics Research, Opposes Kratom Criminalization And Affirms Support For Marijuana Drug Testing

The American Medical Association (AMA) has adopted a series of new drug policy positions, including advocating for psychedelics research, opposing the criminalization of kratom, calling for an end to the sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine and supporting the continued inclusion of marijuana metabolites in employment-based drug tests.

The organization’s House of Delegates, which met last month to consider numerous resolutions, also declined to approve an additional measure to revise its stance on marijuana in a way that would have maintained its opposition to legalization while implicitly recognizing the benefits of regulating cannabis products—instead opting to continuing its advocacy for prohibition without the newly proposed regulatory language.

This comes about a year after AMA delegates voted to amend its policy position to support the expungement of past marijuana convictions in states that have legalized the plant.

Read more at Marijuana Moment

Major kratom importer’s guilty plea stirs questions

(CN) — A California man whose companies grossed more than $60 million selling the botanical supplement kratom has pleaded guilty in federal court in California to illegal importation, and faces up to two years in prison at his Oct. 6 sentencing. 

Sebastian Guthery, whose Linked-In profile says he “founded or co-founded over 15 different companies totaling millions of dollars in sales and annual revenue,” agreed to the plea deal on July 10, according to a Justice Department press release. Guthery’s company, Nine2Five LLC, also pleaded guilty to money laundering. It appears to be the first criminal money laundering conviction for illegally importing kratom into the United States. 

“This should put the kratom industry on notice,” Tyler Hatcher, Special Agent in Charge of IRS Criminal Investigation Los Angeles Field Office, said in the announcement.

Keep reading at Courthouse News Service

Kratom becomes the latest age-restricted product in Florida. What to know

Like alcohol, cigarettes and lottery tickets, kratom is now another age-restricted product in Florida.

Gov. Ron DeSantis last month signed a bill where products containing the plant Mitragyna speciosa can only be sold or given to people older than 21. The law went into effect July 1. 

Kratom is from Southeast Asia and is part of the coffee family. The leaves contain two psychoactive ingredients. Consuming kratom in small amounts can lead to a stimulant effect, and in larger amounts, it acts as a sedative.

The plant’s effects are felt by consuming capsules or an extract, brewing it in a tea or by chewing on its leaves.

Read more at USA Today

Florida passes law restricting how old you have to be to try kratom

FORT MYERS, Fla. — A new Florida law states it’s illegal to sell, deliver, barter, furnish, or give, directly or indirectly, any kratom product to a person under 21 years of age.

Kratom is an herbal substance that can produce stimulant and sedative-like effects. Kratom is sold in many kava bars across Florida. Kava is a complex plant that’s root is often brewed into tea.

Both kava and kratom have become a craze in the Sunshine State.

“The first kava bars opened in the early 2000s in South Florida,” said Dallas Vasquez, CEO of Mitra 9. “Now, without a doubt, there’s more kava bars in the state…

Keep reading at ABC7

Fate of kratom forfeiture lawsuit rests with federal judge

A manufacturer of kratom whose products were seized by the federal government has filed a “reply brief” in court in its quest to retrieve its products and dismiss a lawsuit. 

In the June 21 filing, Botanic Tonics LLC made its final arguments for why the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma should dismiss the government’s first amended complaint, which seeks to condemn and forfeit the kratom products.

Federal Judge John F. Heil III, who is presiding over the case, is under no deadline to rule, and it could be months before a decision is handed down.

Government attorneys earlier this month objected to Botanic Tonics’ request to dismiss the lawsuit.

Keep reading at Natural Products Insider

7 Key Points You Must Know About The Legality Of Kratom Capsules In 2023

In recent years, more and more people have been asking questions about the legality of kratom capsules. After all, this herbal supplement has exploded in popularity due to its energy boosts and relaxation relief capabilities – but it still hasn’t been regulated as a generic medication or approved for over-the-counter sale by the FDA. With statutes continually changing and new regulations cropping up, it can be hard to keep track of where Kratom stands legally speaking with any certainty. That’s why we’ve gathered an exhaustive list of four key points you must understand before making assumptions about the Kratom capsule legality in 2023.

Read the story at

Florida Kratom Consumer Protection Act restricts sales of kratom products to those under 21

Full Story: A new law concerning the sale and distribution of kratom goes into effect on July 1, 2023. During the 2023 Legislative Session, the Florida Kratom Consumer Protection Act passed the legislature unanimously and makes it illegal to “sell, deliver, barter, furnish, or give, directly or indirectly, any kratom product to a person under 21 years of age.”

Source: Yahoo! News

Kratom sales banned for people under 21 starting in July, Polk Co. sheriff warns

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Beginning July 1, it will be illegal to sell kratom, an herbal substance from southeast Asia, to people under 21 years of age in Florida.

“We give everyone who sells this the opportunity to understand this will get you locked up if you sell it to anyone under the age of 21,” said Sheriff Grady Judd.

The Florida legislature passed the ban for people under the age of 21 unanimously this legislative session.

Sheriff Judd refers to the substance as “dangerous” because of the “euphoric” sensation it can give to people who consume it.

“It can create hallucinations, confusion. It’s dangerous,” said the sheriff.

Kratom can be consumed in tea/powder or capsule form.

There is no approved use of kratom by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

In fact, in a release from this month, the FDA warns against using kratom.

Keep reading at MSN