Many herbal products have been banned over the years, for a variety of reasons, and kratom is no exception. In September 2016, the Drug Enforcement Administration, otherwise known as the DEA, wanted to put a nationwide ban on Kratom in the United States. This of course created a great deal of controversy, as kratom was starting to gain popularity.
A kratom ban would make it legal to sell, buy or use kratom in the United States, with punishments such as fines or even jail time if someone were caught selling, buying, or using kratom products.
The DEA, however, stood firm in their stance that kratom is a hazardous drug and classified it as a Schedule 1 Drug, in the same category as marijuana and heroin. By the end of September 2016, the DEA revoked their ban, but are still waging a war against kratom in the U.S. Even during a nationwide crisis in 2020, both the FDA and DEA are still determined to have Kratom banned completely.
At this time, Kratom is still legal in the United States by federal law. However, many are worried that the DEA and FDA will still enforce the ban in the near future. In this article, we shall provide information as to why these organizations are so bent on following through with the kratom ban.
Some Background on the Kratom Ban
Even though at the present time kratom is still federally legal in the US, the FDA is allegedly using unjust means to have their kratom ban declared a law. The ban on kratom will have the following outcomes, according to the agenda of the FDA:
Kratom will be impossible to obtain, which could be detrimental to those who rely on kratom for medicinal use.
All research on kratom will be stopped, or at least drastically slowed down.
Fortunately, the AKA or American Kratom Association plans to pass an act entitled the Kratom Consumer Protection Act, or KPCA, nationwide in the United States. The proposed bill will create a safety net for the sale and distribution of Kratom in the U.S.
But before we delve into the specifics of the KPCA, we need some background as to why the FDA and DEA are so driven on a kratom ban in the first place.
Drug Enforcement Association Attempts a Kratom Ban in September 2016
The DEA was the first to declare war on kratom. The Federal organization viewed kratom in the same way that it sees marijuana, as a gateway drug. Their view is it that was an addictive substance that contains properties that could lead to drug abuse. As well they do not agree that it has any benefits medically. For these reasons, they wanted to completely ban the sale and distribution of kratom and kratom-based products in the U.S.
This also means that anyone residing in the U.S. could not sell or purchase kratom on the internet.
The DEA lacks extensive knowledge of the benefits of kratom. When the kratom ban was first announced in September of 2016, a protest against the ban was held outside the White House. As well, there was a petition circulated that was signed by over 142,000 who were opposed to the ban on kratom. This caused the DEA to backtrack the ban, at least temporarily, by the end of the same month.
The Food and Drug Administration Steps in to Promote the Kratom Ban
The outcry against the kratom ban only delayed the government agencies for just over a year. In October 2017, the FDA submitted their own proposal to ban Kratom and have it classified as a Schedule 1 narcotic, thus restarting the war on kratom.
Scott Gottlieb, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration at the time stated that the FDA planned to ban kratom as an obligation to public health. They declared that unregulated products such as kratom had the potential to become addictive and therefore were a threat to the health and well-being of the citizens of the United States.
Contrary to popular belief, the FDA does not have a premarket process for approving food and drug products in the U.S. The truth is that they can only react when they feel that a product is legitimately unsafe in their eyes. This leads us to the issue of how exactly the FDA is able to bypass such measures.
To put it in simple terms, the FDA does have the authority to pre-approve ingredients and other additives for food products, rather than the food itself, and can thereby apply these regulations to specific additives in food. They very loosely translated these regulations to state that simply by the act of inserting the kratom into a capsule, it is thereby an “additive”.
This means that the capsule itself is labeled as a food, which gives them full authority to ban kratom.
This is as absurd and unjust as it can get. But there is more to the story. This new attempt for a kratom ban by both the DEA and FDA was initially sparked by the HHS (Department of Health and Human Services) by a letter requesting that kratom products be classified as a Schedule 1 narcotic under the following guidelines:
High potential for addiction and abuse
There is no legitimate use for medical purposes
Even under medical supervision, the parameters are deemed unsafe.
The HHS strongly believes that kratom fits these guidelines, despite numerous scientific studies and testimonials of those who regularly used kratom. The DEA then reached out to the FDA which then started the FDA’s support of the kratom ban. In addition to the HHS, DEA, and FDA both the National Institute of Health (NIH) and National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) also supported a ban on Kratom in the United States.
What Is The Next Step to Prevent Kratom Ban
The American public needs to keep in mind that the proposed kratom ban by the Food and Drug Administration (and backed by the DEA, NIDA, NIH, and HHS) is not just going to affect those who use kratom, it’s going to ultimately affect everyone who resides in the United States of America. Through its blatant refusal to fund research studies into the medical and other benefits of kratom products, the FDA is basically giving the public the message that they have no interest in any new products that could be potentially beneficial for Americans, medical or otherwise.
Additionally, the FDA and DEA, in their ongoing war against the use of kratom and kratom-based products, are ultimately increasing the danger in the kratom marketplace. The FDA recently released a report stating that there were large amounts of heavy metals and other contaminants present in a wide array of kratom products. They used this report to further their argument that the “unregulated” market for Kratom must be banned.
Take note of the fact that the reason said the market is “unregulated” is because the DEA, FDA, and other aforementioned government agencies refuse to take any actions to regulate the market or approve the use of Kratom products.
Thus, we must stress the importance of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act (KCPA) as its goal is to regulate the market for kratom and kratom-based products in America. As such, there will be strict manufacturing standards set in place to ensure that kratom is 1005 safe for consumption by the American consumer.
America must come together to stop the kratom ban. This action will not only end the ban on kratom, but it will also protect the future of medical research. We must appeal to our local and federal politicians to regulate the use of kratom products. If the ban were to declare kratom a Schedule 1 narcotic, the FDA, DEA, and so on would be stifling any further research on kratom as well as stopping thousands of Americans from benefiting from regular use of kratom products.
Help Stop the Kratom Ban
If you feel strongly about the kratom ban or the potential for governing banning other medicinal supplements in the future, you can make your voice heard. You can make a donation to the AKA (American Kratom Association) to help fund their grass root complaint to stop the ban on kratom. They are in desperate need of funding to help regulate the kratom marketplace.
If you are unable to make a donation, you can still help stop the kratom ban by contacting your city, county, and state representative urging them to support the Kratom Consumer Protection Act (KCPA). Four states have already passed the KCPA: Utah, Nevada, Georgia, and Arizona. You can help make a difference by phoning or writing to your local government to let them know that you are in support of further research for kratom and kratom-based products. Let your voice be heard in the war on Kratom!