Whether you eat, drink, or inhale it, kratom could be legalized if approved by state officials later this year.
Rep. John Macco of Ledgeview and four other legislators introduced the bill known as AB 393 last week calling for the legalization of the herbal supplement some use to self-treat conditions like pain, anxiety, and opioid use disorder. Under the bill, kratom would be regulated to help prevent other issues from occurring. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, kratom can produce opioid and stimulant-like effects depending on the dosage. Its usage has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for medical use. Rep. Macco told WBAY last week that it would be a “great alternative to add some of the drug problems we have.”
Door County Sheriff’s Department drug investigator Elizabeth Williams says they have not seen too many issues yet with kratom but knows that despite it being a misdemeanor to possess, people can order the supplement through the mail. She sees kratom as an accessory to other drug use, not necessarily a replacement.
Assembly Republicans introduced a bill legalizing kratom last year, but the effort was dropped due to criticism from law enforcement. Kratom is legal in over 40 states with some stipulations and approximately 1.7 million Americans 12 and older used the substance in 2021.