Is Kratom Legal in Ohio?

Kratom is legal in Ohio, though it’s still unregulated. Discover the state’s current stance on the herb, where and how to get it, and what awaits in 2023.

Kratom

By

Bridget Houlihan

on

Jan 21, 2021

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Can Buckeyes buy and enjoy green Malay capsules in their home state? Kratom is legal in Ohio, but its standing hasn’t gone without challenge.

There have been attempts to ban it, and now, the government’s looking into regulating it. Users should familiarize themselves with the existing and potential laws to keep their activities above board.

Join us to learn about the laws on Ohio kratom and discover what you may and may not buy, carry, and consume. We also discuss recent legal developments and the plant’s future in our state.

Kratom in the US

Kratom comes from a coffee tree native to several South Asian nations. It consists of dried, ground, and processed leaves and is usually ingested in tea or powder form. Its effects are stimulating or opioid-like, depending on the dose.

According to reports, small doses increase energy levels; higher amounts induce sedation and pain relief. As such, kratom may be beneficial for medical and recreational use. It may soothe anxiety and provide an alternative to opioids. Some claim it’s also valuable addiction treatment.

This herb has long been a part of Asian herbal medicine, but it only recently became popular in America. What do the official organizations say about it?

We still rely on anecdotal evidence for kratom benefits. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t recognized it as a treatment. The World Health Organization called for more research into its effects.

In the US, kratom is legal at the federal level. The Drug Enforcement Administration wanted to name it a Schedule I substance in 2016. The American Kratom Association (AKA) orchestrated a campaign to oppose this move, and the DEA backed off.

Although the US doesn’t restrict kratom, individual states may supervise it. Some outright ban it, while others rely on regulations to minimize the risks and maximize the benefits. We’re happy to say Ohio falls into the latter category.

Kratom Laws in Ohio

Is kratom legal in Ohio? Yes. The state is currently hands-off regarding this herb, but not all organizations agree with the attitude. The Ohio Board of Pharmacy (OBP) has tried to ban it, while the AKA argued for controlling it. Let’s see what happened in the past few years.

Past Legal Arguments

The OBP voted to make kratom illegal in Ohio in March 2019. It cited six deaths via injection as the reason for the ban. However, medical professionals found the herb wasn’t the primary cause of death in any of these incidents.

Like Ohio’s weed laws, kratom legislation benefits from vocal advocacy groups. Their voices were heard loud and clear during the OBP’s attempt.

The state announced a ban and opened its decision to public comment in the summer of 2019. In response, it received thousands of complaint emails from kratom users. Nearly 100 people attended a hearing and shared their positive experiences with the plant.

In response, the authorities delayed the ban.

There was another bill in August 2019. This time, it proposed a regulatory framework for kratom sale in Ohio, suggesting ways to protect consumers from contaminated products. It didn’t pass, but it proved a bipartisan desire to make the herb safe and accessible.

Use and Sale Restrictions

You can legally buy, sell, carry, and use kratom throughout Ohio as a resident or visitor. No city or county has imposed individual bans. Various gas stations, vape stores, and smoke shops stock it. Unfortunately, the strain selection is limited, and only powder is available.

Since kratom is federally legal, you can safely transport it across state lines. Unlabeled powders and capsules might raise eyebrows, though, so ensure the packaging is unambiguous.

Another option is buying your kratom online, and that’s what most people do. That way, you can get it from licensed vendors even before Ohio officially regulates its sales.

A Push for Regulations

Kratom is legal in Ohio, and anybody can acquire and sell it. Vendors don’t have to follow any testing practices, making it questionable whether local products are safe.

Ohio’s latest regulation attempt is House Bill 236 from March 2022. It instructs the Department of Agriculture to form a kratom production program. Manufacturers would import raw leaves and process them under official guidance.

In essence, the bill would introduce a Kratom Consumer Protection Act (KCPA) into Ohio’s legislature. Several states have passed similar laws, making kratom safe within their borders.

Looking at existing KCPAs and Ohio’s proposals, the law would include the following:

  • Requiring kratom manufacturers to get special licenses
  • Establishing a testing procedure for kratom products
  • Creating a labeling standard, including dosing recommendations
  • Developing strategies for kratom transport and distribution

The bill is awaiting Senate approval, but things are looking up for kratom enjoyers. If it passes, it will benefit the state and the broader community.

Agriculture jobs are prevalent in Ohio, and this move would expand the industry. It would also guarantee clean kratom, stop future controversies, and encourage research into its benefits.

Ohio Kratom in a Nutshell

Kratom is legal for Ohio residents and visitors, and soon, it might become regulated. The KCPA would ensure only pure products are available for purchase, protecting consumers from shady sellers. The state budget would also benefit from introducing it.

Until the KCPA passes, it’s best to rely on licensed vendors for your kratom orders. That way, you stay safe while exploring the plant’s power.

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