The so-called Kratom Consumer Protection Act has passed in Florida. More state bills are on the way, an advocacy group claims.

Hank Schultz, Senior Editor

June 5, 2023

2 Min Read
Florida becomes 11th state to pass kratom law

Another example of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act has become law, this time in Florida.  Similar bills have already been signed into law in 10 other states. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis last week signed the bill, which was sponsored by State Sen. Joe Gruthers, R-Sarasota. 

The bill legalizes the kratom trade in the state, under certain conditions.  

Kratom products may not be marketed to minors and must meet quality standards, the primary of which is meeting a standard of identity.  

Mac Haddow, chief policy fellow of the American Kratom Association, acknowledged some substandard products claiming to be kratom are in the market.  

“Kratom is now legal in Florida as long as the products are not adulterated and meet the standard,” Haddow told Natural Products Insider in a phone interview. 

Haddow said the precise nature of those identity and quality standards remains to be worked out.  

Multiple uses 

Kratom, or Mitragyna speciosa, is a botanical ingredient sourced from the leaves of a tree native to Southeast Asia. The leaves contain the alkaloids mitragynine and 7-hydroxymytragynine, the major psychoactive constituents. Kratom has been consumed in capsules and as a tea, and consumers have even smoked the herb. 

  Consumers have used kratom to address muscle aches, fatigue and other conditions, including pain relief. It has also been used for its purported effect of helping wean users off opioids. 

Related:Kratom manufacturer fights feds over seizure

The passage of the bill in Florida now makes it the 11th state to pass such a law. Haddow said similar bills are expected to pass this year in Virginia, West Virginia and Texas. In addition, more bills are underway in New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, he said. 

One caveat in the passage of the Florida bill, Haddow said, is the fees for vendor registration still need to be worked out. According to Haddow, the Florida Department of Agriculture was asking for $10 million to administer the bill’s provisions, which the AKA believes is beyond the pale by an order of magnitude. The costs of administering a similar law in Idaho were a fraction of that figure, Haddow said. 

Federal regulatory picture 

Haddow said his organization believes the mounting number of state bills will put pressure at the federal level to get an overarching regulatory solution that would apply to all states. However, such a regulatory solution might seem to be a long shot given federal authorities are still searching out and seizing kratom products in some jurisdictions. 

In Oklahoma, for example, a kratom distributor recently filed a case in federal court to have a civil forfeiture action dismissed after $3 million worth of kratom products were seized. U.S. prosecutors in an amended complaint described the kratom products as “adulterated” under federal law because “they contain or are a new dietary ingredient, kratom, for which there is inadequate information to provide reasonable assurance that this ingredient does not present a significant or unreasonable risk of illness of injury.” 



About the Author(s)

Hank Schultz

Senior Editor, Informa

Hank Schultz has been the senior editor of Natural Products Insider since early 2023. He can be reached at [email protected]

Prior to joining the Informa team, he was an editor at NutraIngredients-USA, a William Reed Business Media publication.

His approach to industry journalism was formed via a long career in the daily newspaper field. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin with degrees in journalism and German, Hank was an editor at the Tempe Daily News in Arizona. He followed that with a long stint working at the Rocky Mountain News, a now defunct daily newspaper in Denver, where he rose to be one of the city editors. The newspaper won two Pulitzer Prizes during his time there.

The changing landscape of the newspaper industry led him to explore other career paths. He began his career in the natural products industry more than a decade ago at New Hope Natural Media, which was then part of Penton and now is an Informa brand. Hank formed friendships and partnerships within the industry that still inform his work to this day, which helps him to bring an insider’s perspective, tempered with an objective journalist’s sensibility, to his in-depth reporting.

Harkening back to his newspaper days, Hank considers the readers to be the primary stakeholders whose needs must be met. Report the news quickly, comprehensively and above all, fairly, and readership and sponsorships will follow.

In 2015, Hank was recognized by the American Herbal Products Association with a Special Award for Journalistic Excellence.

When he’s not reporting on the supplement industry, Hank enjoys many outside pursuits. Those include long distance bicycle touring, mountain climbing, sailing, kayaking and fishing. Less strenuous pastimes include travel, reading (novels and nonfiction), studying German, noodling on a harmonica, sketching and a daily dose of word puzzles in The New York Times.

Last but far from least, Hank is a lifelong fan and part owner of the Green Bay Packers.

Subscribe and receive the latest insights on the health and nutrition industry.
Join 37,000+ members. Yes, it's completely free.

You May Also Like