Kratom is Safe In Vermont!
UPDATE 12/31/16: 7HM remains in the Emergency Drugs Ban, with no mention of Kratom, or clarifying the rule by specifying isolated 7HM or synthesized 7HM. However, it is on the record, in the minutes, that the whole leaf is not what they are looking for and that the state does not intent to go after the plant. That said, Major Kratom relocated to New Hampshire to avoid complications.
The Vermont Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules met Thursday, 0800, 1/24/13 at the Vermont State House. This was to be the final ruling on whether the alkaloid 7-Hydroxy-Mitragynine would remain on the list creating a gray area regarding the legality of Kratom in ground and simple tincture forms.
Clinical Herbalist, Justin Garner of Sweet Flag Medicinals in Brattleboro, VT and I, Bill Lockwood of Major Kratom testified as part of the agenda. The LCAR committee was very receptive of the testimony which:
- Compared Kratom to Krypton, a designer drug (synthetic opiate) that used Kratom as a carrier/bulker to cut 0-DT - a more potent form of tramadol
- Identified the many uses of Kratom by reading some customer testimonies. Thank you for sending those in. These were key in humanizing the issue, attaching the wellbeing of your families, etc
- Noted the huge increase in opiate pain killer prescriptions, and the corresponding increases in deaths due to accidental overdose
- Corrected some misinformation from the department of health
- 25g Kratom dose - that doesn't sound good
- Banned in europe - actually sweden due to the Krypton deaths
- Banned in indonesia - actually Thailand due to Act 2486 of 1943, to enforce Opiate taxes
- The LCAR Chair suggested that the rule was unclear. Did a ban on 7HM mean a ban on Kratom in its natural state?
- This was interesting, and ultimately it was decided that the threat was ultra-potent synthesized 7HM or isolated 7HM was the risk - after all this is a bath salts bill
- The committee recommended that Kirk Kimball (Dept. Of Health Organic Chemistry Program Chief and Bessie Weiss (Dept. Health Legal Counsel) take another week to create language in the bill that specifically targets isolated and/or synthesized 7HM and not the whole Kratom leaf
- Richard Marek, the Chair of the Committee, made it clear that the bill as it stood created a gray area for those that distribute and consume kratom - and that the practice of law creation didn't like gray areas. He suggested a gray that would make Justin and myself uncomfortable. It was left that the target was the 7HM in a form that could be abused and not the beneficial Kratom leaf
- It seemed by the end of the meeting, the Committee was educated on the benefits of Kratom and that its typically cited drawbacks did not out weigh the benefits
- Letters sent in to the Board of Health, Kirk/Bessie, should have (and may have) also gone to the LCAR committee. As a learning we see that the non-scientific parts of state government are more concerned with compassion and the human aspect; where as the Department of Health is concerned with safety and drawbacks as opposed to health as a whole.
- Luckily the Dept. of Health also agrees that the threat of abuse is 7HM alone and that Kratom is not a threat in a non-enriched form
For those interested we'll post the handouts that we used below. Foot notes went a long way in these.
Major Kratom One Sheet - http://bit.ly/Xs7FUE
Sweetflag Medicinals One Sheet - http://bit.ly/VzH8Wb
Also, the champion of the hearing was Linda, a sufferer of Lyme disease, and the extreme anxiety that accompanies it. Linda read her prepared and succinct testimony. As she went on she struggled more and more to be able to speak, at times sounding like she'd burst into tears. She showed the committee real proof that there was a human need for Kratom, and that this was an issue of compassion not to be taken lightly. Thank you Linda - you were incredible.
Thank you for keeping us posted. That is wonderful news!
January 24 2013 at 02:01 PM
That is great news. Congratulations!
January 24 2013 at 05:01 PM
Yes, please post the handouts. That would be very helpful here in Indiana!
Thanks for the update.
January 26 2013 at 09:01 AM
Awesome Job!!! :D
February 06 2013 at 03:02 PM
Thank you for the info. I will be looking forward to the handouts.
February 07 2013 at 06:02 PM
this is great news, thanks for all your effort and work to see this through.
March 05 2013 at 02:03 PM
Awesome work! Reading this inspires hope, and as one who’s dignity and probably life have been saved by this plant im optimistic that this is a winnable fight if we attack it in a sensible manner.
April 04 2013 at 01:04 AM
I think Kratom is a Godsend. litteraly
July 08 2013 at 05:07 PM
hello: this may read more like an e-mail but i decided, rather than sending one (& if the admin chooses to leave this post up), to share my thoughts with others who visit this page. hope it’s ok.
thank you for standing up for us, the householders, who make use of herbal medicines. i’m also an RN & have, for many years, believed in wholistic & integrative health care. i studied western herbology (& the basics of chinese plant medicine), both formally & informally, long before i ever attended nursing school & i was very glad to learn about kratom a few years ago. which i use as an alternative to the heavy drugs i was prescribed by my well meaning physicians. nothing else worked at the time so i remain grateful. but it was eventually very hard on the body & it needed a break. i do sometimes take ‘regular meds’ when needed – but all of my doctors know i also take herbs, including kratom, also as needed. & i feel lucky that they’ve been supportive….the information you share on this page re: the Vermont LCAR committee is wonderful & welcomed & it will be helpful. since i do still sometimes cross paths with individuals – doctors, herbalists, members of the public) who have very closed minds when it comes herbs. esp. when it has anything to do with ethnobotanicals, natural pain killers & similar. one west coast herbalist i contacted (after i became ill & was suffering a lot of pain while on a road trip), he completely freaked out when i asked if he carried kratom. he thought only drug addicts used it & said so. i kind of read him the riot act, briefly told him my story & then i suggested he study more before i hung up. though, normally, i do aim to not force my beliefs & experiences on anyone else..normally..but i had a very human moment that day..& a few hours later i located another herbalist who was wonderful… but why i appreciate your efforts: it can be challenging if an interested person starts asking questions & one of their friends or relatives, even random bystanders, jumps in to discourage the discussion..so your report page here is saved for reference – thanks again!..& i’m happy to add your website to my bookmarked list of herbal medicine suppliers.
August 06 2013 at 01:08 AM
Many thanks for all of your work on this!
Do you have any updates on this issue? According to the above, in 2013 the LCAR committee made laudable recommendations to the Department of Health, asking for additional language clarifying that the law specifically targets isolated and/or synthesized 7HM, not the kratom leaf. The above also notes that the Department of Health agrees that kratom leaf is not a threat.
I was able to find the April 2015 proposed amended version of the Regulated Drug Rule. However, while 7HM has been reclassified and drug definitions have been modified, the amended version does not expressly address the kratom leaf. It is not clear that, on its face, this amended version avoids the gray area problem.
The proposed amended document: http://healthvermont.gov/regs/documents/regulated_drugs_rule_proposed_amended.pdf
Any thoughts/updates much appreciated!
September 04 2015 at 12:09 AM
OK, here it is 2016. The above link from 2015 by Wisteria Stone is a dead link. Apparently there are many sources who believe for some reason that Vermont has an outright ban. I can find no evidence that there was ever any public comment period even though that is a VT requirement. I’d welcome any message from someone who has the correct present info as of Oct 2016; I always respect confidentiality.
October 23 2016 at 07:10 PM
curious if there’s been anything new regarding this issue? I am just wondering: Is kratom leaf illegal in Vermont? Thank you.
February 01 2017 at 07:02 PM
John and MV: The best thing to do is to contact the American Kratom Association and request that they come lobby in Vermont to remove constituents of kratom from the Synthetic Drugs Ban in Vermont. http://www.americankratom.org/
February 02 2017 at 12:02 PM