A DEA Ban on Kratom in the USA

Alert: Please check this article in full to ensure no updates have been made, as Kratom is currently in the DEA's scopes!

Lately the latest plant in the DEA's crosshairs is Kratom, or Mitragyna Speciosa. Specifically, the DEA is considering banning Kratom in the United States, schedule I. This means anyone caught with any Kratom would be dealing with a Schedule I drug charge right alongside heroin, LSD, MDMA (ecstasy) and mescaline (peyote). Although there has been no solid evidence that Kratom has been the sole contributing factor in any death, the increasing number of hospital visits with users admitting to using Kratom has created enough concern for the DEA to continue to push.

What is Kratom?

Kratom is a tropical evergreen plant that grows in Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, and Thailand and is enjoyed recreationally as well as used medicinally. In fact, Kratom has been used for centuries traditionally to treat many things, including pain, as well as for recreational purposes. This is thanks to Kratom's primary alkaloids, mitragynine and 7-HMG are selective full agonists of the opioid receports, providing a stimulating effect at lower doses and an opioid effect at higher doses. Different strains produce different effects. Typically Kratom is brewed into a tea and enjoyed warm, or taken in capsules. Some companies create extracts which are more potent and are typically sold with 10:1, 50:1, or 100:1 extract ratios which identify their strength.

DEA Ban on Kratom Delayed

Originally the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) determined the active alkaloids in the Kratom plant to be an imminent hazard to public safety and on August 30th, 2016, announced that it would be banning Kratom as Schedule I. However, soon after the DEA made the announcement it would be scheduling Kratom, the intentions were withdrawn as a result of an enraged public and a lot of protesting. Additionally, a petition with more than 140,000 signatures and a slew of elected officials and prominent figures argued against banning Kratom, suggesting the ban could backfire.

People use Kratom for many reasons. A lot of Kratom users found the plant in order to ween themselves off of harder drugs. Kratom has been boasted by many to save lives and help beat more serious addictions, such as heroin. Many users claimed to be more productive than usual with an interested attention span. Other users choose Kratom for its pain relief properties. No matter the reason, a lot of people find Kratom a helpful plant and continue to fight to keep it legal. In response to such loyal advocacy, the DEA put a hold on the ban and invited the public to provide opinions in what they call a "review period" [september 30, 2016].

The DEA suggests that users and advocates frequently check their website in order to find the latest details on any upcoming ban. The DEA also reached out to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in an effort to speed up medical and scientific research on Mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, the two most significant active alkaloids in the plant.


Updated 6-30-17: Kratom is banned in the following states >

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Indiana
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • Wisconsin

Update 4-13-17:Kratom is still legal, unbanned and totally unscheduled in the United States federally. The DEA has not banned Kratom yet! Please reference the below posts to ensure your state has not independently banned kratom before ordering!

Update 3-26-17: Kratom is still legal and unbanned (also unscheduled) in the United States. Please remember, however, that some states have still decided to outlaw Kratom.

Some states have addressed Kratom (however, it still remains legal in these states), including: Florida, Louisiana, New York, North Carolina, and Oregon.

Update 1-18-17: Kratom remains UNBANNED, UNSCHEDULED and LEGAL in the United States federally (this means the DEA has not banned Kratom). However, in addition to the states which have already banned Kratom (listed below in the update referenced on 12-7-16), the following states are attempting to pass legislature which would ban Kratom: Florida, New York, North Carolina, Oregon. Most vendors will not ship to these states (however, some vendors, such as PirateBotanicals.com, will ship to these states).

Update 12-7-16: Technically, Kratom remains unscheduled by the DEA while public opinions are being reviewed. However, the following states have already banned Kratom: Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Tennessee, Vermont, and Wisconsin.

Kratom Substitutes

There are many substitutes that are very effective and can be used just like Kratom. There are legal high alternatives to Kratom that are also ethnobotanical and organic. One of the best alternatives that is legal in the United States is Kanna Root (also known as Sceletium tortuosum). Kanna is a very potent psychoactive plant which can be chewed, ingested as a tea or powder (capsule or toss and wash style), snuffed (like chewing tobacco), or even smoked. Kanna is well known to very positively interact with other drugs. The two active alkaloids contribute to anti-anxiety (xanax-like) effects. It is also a wonderful recreational / social drug and is considered to be a mood enhancer.

Another fantastic alternative to Kratom is Kava Kava (Piper methysticum, which literally tranlates into intoxicating pepper). Kava roots are used to produce a highly euphoriant, entheogenic tea with outstanding sedative properties. Kava is well consumed around the world, many places even substituting "Kava bars" in place of regular alcohol-serving bars.

Dr Hyde says...
It's probably wise to find a replacement, as usually when the DEA has a certain plant in their scopes, they almost always succeed in taking it down! If you're looking for a replacement to Kratom, try out Kava or Kanna. When used correctly, both of these plants make a very good substitute to Kratom.

Tags: DEA banning kratom, kratom ban United States, Kratom alternatives, Kratom substitutes, substitutes to Kratom

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0 #2 Emily Bakers 2016-12-29 08:49
I switched to vaping kava.
0 #1 Clever Clover 2016-12-12 04:14
Yea I doubt Kratom will last much longer, and you're right about trying to find a substitute. It seems kind of hard this time. Usually there's always a good substitute. Anyone tried kava? Does it actually work? Is that a good substitute for real...because I'm like panicking every day thinking about what is going to happen when I cannot get my Kratom anymore.

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