Kratom’s Ever-Changing Legal Status

While it is our intention to provide our readers with up-to-date information regarding the legalities of Kratom, it is an ever-changing landscape and is only intended as a guide. We would strongly advise that local research is done individually to ascertain each region’s laws. This article in no way constitutes legal advice and is for general information purposes only.

Rarely has something caused so much furore in government circles as Kratom. So much so, in fact, that in the US, a great many fallacies and untruths have been touted, with a view to turning people away from what is, after all, a natural product. While the Food and Drug Administration do everything in their power to sully its name, organizations such as the American Kratom Association work tirelessly to keep not only the authorities apprised of the facts, but also the general public, too. The AKA also have the weight of science and consumers behind them, but battling misinformation is a long, uphill battle.

With that in mind, here are the most current legal statuses in the US and around the world.

Where the US Stands on Kratom

Laws differ from state to state, but to date Kratom is legal in the following states, which are listed alphabetically for your convenience.

•   Alaska

•   Arizona (KCPA in force)

•   California – (Banned in San Diego County)

•   Colorado – (Banned in Denver)

•   Connecticut 

•   Delaware    

•   Florida – (Banned in Sarasota County)

•   Georgia (KCPA in force)

•   Hawaii         

•   Idaho

•   Illinois – (Only to adults, but banned in Jerseyville)

•   Iowa

•   Kansas        

•   Kentucky     

•   Louisiana     

•   Maine         

•   Maryland    

•   Massachusetts         

•   Michigan     

•   Minnesota

•   Missouri      

•   Mississippi – (Banned in Alton & Union City)  

•   Montana     

•   Nebraska     

•   Nevada (KCPA in force)

•   New Hampshire – (Only to adults 18+)

•   New Jersey  

•   New Mexico

•   New York    

•   North Carolina         

•   North Dakota          

•   Ohio

•   Oklahoma   

•   Oregon                    

•   Pennsylvania

•   South Carolina         

•   South Dakota

•   Tennessee (21+ in its natural form only – no synthetic products)       

•   Texas          

•   Utah (KCPA in force)

•   Virginia       

•   Washington 

•   West Virginia           

•   Wyoming    

It is well worth noting that a few states have introduced the KCPA, or the Kratom Consumer Protection Act, which seeks to ensure that the sale and use of Kratom is safe for all. This is a huge boost to the industry, and it’s hoped that other places will follow suit. The American Kratom Association is working with more than a dozen other states to bring in the KCPA.

Many of the above states put up a fight by putting forward legislation; however, it was either not passed or lifted, so for now Kratom remains legal in those states. Some of them do have legislation pending, though, which is why it is so important to do your own up-to-date research because that could change at any time.

In the remaining states, Kratom has been banned, and for clarity these states are:

•   Alabama

•   Arkansas

•   Indiana

•   Rhode Island

•   Vermont

•   Wisconsin

The Rest of the World

Discovering up-to-date information about the Kratom laws in other countries is notoriously difficult, and, like in the US, it is subject to change. Once again, we would advise you to do your own research on any country in which you have an interest, in order to comply with their laws.

Below we have detailed what we do know, as of 2020.

•   Africa – while not a lot can be gleaned from our research regarding the status of Kratom use in Africa, it is apparent that in South Africa, at least, Kratom is legal. However, to what extent it is used or even recognized, we don’t know for sure.

•   The Americas – Kratom is not banned in Canada, per se, but it is banned for human consumption. The legalities are circumvented by using other terms such as incense. In North and South America, as well as Central Latin America, Kratom is legal but not widely known or used.

•   Asia – the home of Kratom. Bizarrely, it is illegal in many Asian places, including Israel, Japan, Myanmar, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, and Vietnam. Information about China is limited, although it is known to be legal in Hong Kong. Thailand has recently lifted its own ban, which was implemented in 1943. Indonesia is one to watch, though, as they are currently considering a ban which is being fought by the AKA.

•   Europe – as with the rest of the world, the laws are ever-changing. Across Denmark, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia and Sweden, there is a blanket ban, while in Ireland, Italy, and the UK it is, at the moment at least, legal.

•   Australasia – Kratom is illegal in both Australia and New Zealand, although it is possible in rare circumstances to have it prescribed by a doctor.

Once again, it should be noted: While it is our intention to provide our readers with up-to-date information regarding the legalities of Kratom, it is an ever-changing landscape and is only intended as a guide. We would strongly advise that local research is done individually to ascertain each region’s laws. This article in no way constitutes legal advice and is for general information purposes only.

Is There Anything You Can Do to Help?

The best thing anyone can do to help further Kratom’s cause is to champion it. Join the AKA, become a member on forums, and make sure you are armed with all the latest information so that when someone challenges the legalities and ‘risks’ of Kratom, you can be an advocate and help to spread the word. The battle is being won, but there’s still a long way to go before it’s over!

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