Recently, our attorneys have seen has been a large uptick in interest, both from consumers and businesses, in ketamine and psychedelics. There has been a proliferation of ketamine clinics in the United States (see here here, and here), and dozens of jurisdictions (such as Denver and Oregon) passed or are considering passing psychedelics laws that would do everything from decriminalizing psychedelics to regulating them. But interest has not stopped there and we’ve also been fielding questions about newer or lesser known substances as well.
Today, we’re going to write about a substance that’s gotten a lot less attention: kratom. Kratom is a species of plant (Mitragyna speciosa) that is native to certain regions in Southeast Asia. Kratom derivatives have been used in a number of different formulations for human consumption, including in powder form, edible form, and for smoking. We have worked with kratom industry businesses sporadically, going back to 2015.
Advocates for kratom say that it is a natural, plant-based substance that has properties which, among other things, can assist with opioid withdrawal and addiction or pain management. Critics of kratom believe that the plant has not been sufficiently studied to be deemed safe, is in fact not