History of Kratom Bans
Around the world, the superplant product known as Kratom has become incredibly popular. From its origins in Southeast Asia, Kratom, known by its scientific name as Mitragyna speciosa, has captivated herbal product fans in the United States and abroad.
Unfortunately, there has been much scrutiny given to this natural plant product. In fact, several U.S. government agencies have attempted to regulate, restrict, and even ban the importation of Kratom products. The herbal community is banding together to fight these attempts, and you can join in to voice your opinion.
Kratom Ban Attempts
When Kratom imports began arriving on U.S. shores, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) labeled the plant material as a possible concern. There was much confusion and little understanding of the plant and its active chemical compounds, which led to this unfortunate labeling. After several months, the DEA was unable to build a case against the continued importation of M. speciosa, and they submitted their sparse findings to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA then began to restrict imports until a greater understanding was reached. Both agencies continued to work against this natural plant and its products.
As recently as September 2016, the DEA attempted to classify Kratom, specifically mitragyna leaf powder, as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance in the United States. Schedule 1 drugs are classified as having no medical value and a high potential for abuse; drugs like LSD, methamphetamine, and heroin are also on the Schedule 1 list.
To combat the attempted classification of mitragyna leaf powder as having no medicinal value, a strong and vocal grassroots support system sprang in. The herbal community is backed by powerful lobbying groups like the American Kratom Association, the Botanical Education Alliance, and Kratom United, just to name a few.
What Can You Do to Help?
The DEA still has an open comment period as they work to classify Kratom as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance with no medical value. Supporters across the United States let their voices be heard during the comment period, and while that slowed government attempts at further regulation, the battle isn’t over.
In order to help support the continued accessibility and legality of Kratom products, it is critical that you voice your opinion. A great place to start is with your elected representatives in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. In those houses of Congress, several committees hold jurisdiction over the actions of the DEA. These include:
- House Energy and Commerce Committee
- House and Senate Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Committees
- House and Senate Judiciary Committees
- House Oversight and Government Reform Committee
Of these, the House and Senate Judiciary Committees are the most important. Contact your representatives in these committees by messaging them online, by telephone, or by mail.
Together, the herbal community and consumers of the botanical superplant known as Kratom can put an end to regulatory attempts to stop the importation, sale, and use of these valuable products. When we make our voices heard, we can ensure that Kratom users have continued access to the product and remain on the good side of the law.This article was written by Sebastian Guthery.