At the end of August the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced that they are making kratom illegal, placing it as a Schedule 1 drug alongside heroin, cannabis and other substances deemed to be the most dangerous in the world. The move was initially set to become official today, September 30th, but DEA spokesperson Russ Baer tells us that the move has been delayed indefinitely, though it’s “just a matter of time” before it will be finalized.
According to Baer, the proper paperwork to make kratom a Schedule 1 drug has not been completed, which is the cause of the delay. The DEA’s Diversion Control Division is currently preparing a final order, which will be in effect for several years and will outline criminal sanctions associated with those continuing to use and sell kratom. Once complete, it will go to the Federal Register which will publish it a few days after.
The DEA wouldn’t confirm when all of this will take place, but we can expect kratom to be illegal within a matter of weeks, or even days.
A petition calling on the White House to stop this move has received over 140,000 signatures in a 30-day period, well more than the 100,000 required to get an official response (the 30-day period ended yesterday, so a response can be expected in the coming days).