Kratom has been hugely beneficial for tens of millions of people around the world, including millions in the USA. So it’s really depressing to have to talk about kratom legality when it’s been shown to be so good for things like pain, withdrawal symptoms, anxiety, social problems, and depression.
Even in the USA, millions of Americans still can’t feel the benefits of kratom, and instead are trapped in prescription medications (which obviously benefits the massive drug companies), or turning to illegal narcotics, to get some relief from troubling symptoms, and to feel pleasure in problematic lives.
So let’s clear up confusion around kratom legality, in the USA, and also kratom legality by country. At least you can then understand if it’s legal where you are so that you don’t take a risk with your freedom.
Kratom Legality Is Very Confusing
Before we even talk kratom legality by country, we need to talk about kratom legality in the USA, because it’s probably the most confusing situation in the entire world. Under federal law, kratom is currently legal. That means that across the whole USA, at the federal level, it’s totally within the law to do what you want with kratom.
The problem is that in some states, state law has made kratom illegal. Even though federal law should overturn state law, that’s not actually what is happening in real life.
You then have an even more insane situation, where some counties within states have outlawed kratom, even though at state, and federal level, it’s totally legal.
Making the issue even more confusing are the FDA. They want kratom to be outlawed, and are pushing poor evidence into the public domain, and lawmakers decisions, around its safety to try and achieve that.
Then you have the DEA, who also want kratom to be illegal. They want it scheduled as a drug in the same bracket as other opiates like heroin and opium. Which considering the complete lack of scientific evidence that it should be, a crazy situation, which is stigmatizing something that is generally totally legal.
States Where Kratom Is Illegal
So the big picture is that at the federal level in the USA, kratom is totally legal. It’s also legal in all states and counties, other than the following list of states where kratom as illegal:
- Rhode Island’s
- Jerseyville County, Illinois
- Saratoga County, Florida
- San Diego, California
- Union County, Mississippi
- Columbus City, Mississippi
So as you can see, in America, there is a ridiculous situation where you could be committing a crime at the county level, even when it’s completely legal in that state, and at the federal level.
Places Kratom Is Legal In The USA And What That Means
The good news is that kratom is still legal in the majority of USA, and long may that remain the case. Where it’s legal, there are no restrictions at all. That means it’s completely fine to buy and consume kratom, to pass it on, to talk about it, be seen with it, everything.
You can grow kratom plants, you can produce kratom yourself, you can pass it on. None of that is a problem. The only problem is for people selling it. Although it’s not illegal to buy, it’s still regulated by FDA restrictions.
Unless it’s approved as a supplement or medication, then it can’t be marketed as for human consumption, or as beneficial to humans. That’s why you will see kratom routinely marketed for ludicrous things, and also with statements to ensure no claims are made about health benefits.
Kratom Legality By Country
Moving outside the USA, kratom legality by country is an increasingly patchy picture.
A lot of guides around kratom legality around the world are now badly out of date, due to changes in many countries of the past couple of years. So don’t be fooled by all the websites, a lot of them reputable, saying that the great news is kratom is mostly legal. It’s not true anymore.
It’s not possible to state kratom legality by country, and the reasons behind it, in such a short guide to kratom legality, but we can give you some highlights in the major areas:
- Bizarrely, in Southeast Asia, where most of the worlds kratom is produced and exported from, kratom is not legal. It was outlawed in Thailand in 1943, but not for health reasons. The Thai government wanted to take control of the opium trade, so outlawed it for that reason. Likewise, it’s illegal in Malaysia and Indonesia.
Which is incredibly odd as it means all the kratom producing countries can’t actually sell it or consume it, in their own countries.
- Kratom is completely legal in India. In fact, there is a kratom tree, a member of the same family, that grows natively in India. A very similar substance to kratom is derived from it, and sold within India.
But this kratom substitute is not as powerful, or reliable. But it is actually still labeled as kratom, and is sometimes exported to the West under the label of kratom. If you are buying poor kratom, and the website won’t tell you where it’s from, then you can suspect it’s actually a kratom-like substance from India.
- Within the EU, kratom is about 50-50 in terms of its legality. In some countries, it’s completely outlawed. This is the case in the UK, where it became illegal under the psychoactive substances act recently. This is also the case recently in Italy.
In other parts of the EU, it’s a gray area, especially in the eastern parts of Europe, where drug laws are far more confusing, and poorly policed. But in many parts of the EU, including major countries like Spain, Belgium, France, Portugal and Germany, kratom is still totally legal.
Be Careful traveling With Kratom
So the final word here is that you need to find out where kratom is legal before you travel, and before you consume it wherever you are. In the USA, you need to know the legality of kratom not only in the USA federally, but also in the state you are currently in, and in a few rare instances, even in the county, you are in.
And you can’t assume traveling between countries. You might think that traveling between Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia would be safe, both in terms of carrying kratom, consuming it, and buying it, because that’s where it’s grown, and even openly sold from.
But as we’ve said, bizarrely, even though the governments of these countries benefit from it, you can’t legally own it. That doesn’t stop it being sold, and it’s well known that in Thai beach resorts you can get kratom cocktails. But you could get into trouble for being in possession of it.
So when it comes to kratom legality, both in the USA and by country, never assume.