What is Mitragyna Speciosa?

What is commonly referred to as Kratom is scientifically known as Mitragyna Speciosa - a tropical evergreen tree in the coffee family native to Southeast Asia. Specifically, M. Speciosa is indigenous to Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea. The leaves are dark green and glossy, with distinctive red, white, or yellow veins. The veins of the Mitragyna Speciosa leaves correlate to the type of Kratom (red, green, white, etc.).

This plant has been consumed in South East Asia since at least the nineteenth century, but it is estimated that it has been used by locals for much longer. Depending on the amount ingested, Kratom can produce feelings of euphoria, calmness, and may enhance energy. The leaves of the tree are chewed or made into a tea. It is commonly prepared by local manual laborers looking to combat fatigue and improve work productivity. The leaves are also chewed because many people believe they alleviate musculoskeletal pain and increase energy, appetite, and sexual desire. 

It has been suggested that the Dutch botanist Pieter Korthals gave the genus the “Mitragyna” name in 1839. “Mitra” could have been used because the leaves and the stigmas of the flowers of the plant resemble the shape of a bishop’s mitre. However, some speculate that Mitragyna derives its meaning from the “Mithraic cults.” The Mithraic cults were mystical Roman cults who are believers followed the god Mithras, who is the god of friendship, contract, and order.

 


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Can Kratom Make a Comeback in Wisconsin?

With regard to the law, Kratom has had some highs and lows over the last decade. Although the Mitragyna Speciosa plant remains unregulated in most states, state and federal politicians consistently try to ban it. One state has already succeeded in criminalizing the plant - Wisconsin. 

In 2014, the Wisconsin Senate passed legislation that classified Kratom’s two main alkaloids--mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine--as controlled substances. It was a brash decision that has garnered ethical, constitutional, and political criticisms.

Controversial Senate Bill 325 managed to pass with bipartisan support and was signed into law by Governor Scott Walker just seven months after it was first introduced. The bill was introduced by Republican Senator Sheila Harsdorf and her colleagues, whom were a mix of republicans and democrats.

The bill in question lumped Kratom in with both hallucinogens and dangerous “synthetic cannabinoids,” neither of which Kratom is. Kratom is an indigenous plant to Southeast Asia that has been traditionally ingested by locals for millenia. Today, Kratom is used across the globe for its calming and mood enhancing effects. 

Unlike synthetic cannabinoids, whose devastating effects have been felt across the nation,  there have been no recorded deaths or hospitalizations attributable to the use of Kratom.

On October 30th, five years after the Kratom ban, the Wisconsin State Health Committee held a two-hour informational hearing dedicated to Kratom. The American Kratom Association was joined by Dr. Jack Henningfield, the face of Kratom 8-Factor Analysis and Utah Senator Curt Bramble, who was the first to pass the Kratom Consumer Protection Act (KCPA). Over the course of two-hours, politicians, scientists, and business owners engaged in healthy discourse. Everyone who partook in the hearing certainly increased their Kratom knowledge. If you want to watch the hearing and boost your Kratom knowledge, click here: Informational Hearing on Kratom 

After the hearing, the feedback from the senators was overwhelmingly positive. We should expect a bill introducing the KCPA in Wisconsin soon. If that passes, Kratom will once again be legal in Wisconsin. 

https://www.americankratom.org/mediak/news/wisconsin-senate-health-committee-information-hearing-on-kratom.html

 


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Indonesia Bans their King Cash Crop

Kratom is one of Indonesia’s biggest exports, rivaling palm oil and rubber. This high global demand has allowed Indonesian farmers to make more money off Kratom than other commodities. Compared to palm oil or rubber, Kratom production is simple, quick, and takes up less land. And most importantly, raw Kratom leaves are worth more per kilogram than rubber or other crops. As a result, many farmers who were scraping by harvesting latex from rubber trees and oil from palms are switching to Kratom

Growers are personally exporting hundreds of tons of Kratom a month. Kratom crops are providing Indonesian farmers with additional profits that they’ve not experienced before. This extra income is putting their children through college and increasing their standard of living. 

But - this past June - Indonesia issued a regulation banning Kratom in Indonesia. The ban includes producing, growing, and exporting Kratom and consists of a 5-year transition period for Kratom growers to shift to another crop. 

The impact of this ban in Indonesia could cripple Indonesian Kratom farmers and would severely deplete Kratom supply in the United States - given that 95% of the world’s Kratom comes from Indonesia. 

The Indonesian impact on the US Kratom trade is speculative, but the American impact on this policy is inevitable. The United States of America Food and Drug Administration had contact with and reportedly influenced the Indonesian Minister of Health to place the ban. 

Even though the Kratom ban in Indonesia has already issued, representatives from the American Kratom Association and the Botanical Education Alliance have traveled to Indonesia to discuss a reasonable resolution.  In Indonesia, these representatives met with the Ministry of Health.

While the first meeting with the Ministry of Health went well, anti-Kratom Indonesian organizations have blocked any further discourse. 

According to sources, Daniel Jonah, Deputy Chairperson of the House of Representatives Commission IV, has been furious about the decision. He pointed out that once more, a government issues a ban without doing proper research or basing their decisions on scientific data. Not only does a ban affect the local farmers, but the whole Indonesian economy will also suffer. Indonesia is banning one of its biggest exports and will no longer receive the wealth brought in by a valuable resource like Kratom

The American Kratom Association (AKA) is working hand in hand with the Botanical Education Alliance (BEA) to spread awareness and is currently raising funds to send another delegation to Indonesia.

https://www.americankratom.org/update/update-on-indonesia-and-their-proposed-kratom-export-ban.html 


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New Club13 Kratom CBD Fusion

Melding the best of Brands.

CBD and Kratom has seen a surge in popularity over the last several years. Everyone from CEOs to soccer moms, cattle farmers to surfers are talking about the positive and natural effects these compounds offer. CBD’s mood-boosting and calming effects has nurtured an active and growing user base. Meanwhile, Kratom’s popularity is fostering its own grassroot movement.

Needless to say, the CBD and Kratom craze is here to stay.

That's why Club13 is excited to introduce a brand new unique product-fusion with our Pursuit of Wellness CBD brand, Club13 Kratom+CBD!

A fantastic blend of our finest Green Malay Kratom and 2.5mg of pure, hemp-derived CBD isolate. Each Club13 Kratom+CBD capsule contains 950mg of our fantastic kratom/CBD blend.

 


Kratom Ban Fails in Point Pleasant Beach

Ban or regulate? Ban v. regulation is the question sweeping across the country in city halls, state legislatures, and supreme courts. What do we do with alcohol,  e-scooters, or tide-pods? It's a tougher question for some sectors and a straight question for others. With alcohol, a total ban didn't work. Just ask the 18th and 21st Amendments! For the Kratom industry, regulation seems to be the obvious answer. 

After a victory for Kratom on the federal level, the debate over Kratom has moved from the national stage to your local town hall. 

On October 2, 2019, Councilman and Mayoral candidate, Paul M. Kantira, proposed an ordinance that would ban the sale of Kratom in the small coastal town of Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey. After the City Council cast two votes, Councilman Kantira called to table the election because it was "clear the proposed ban would not pass." 

Councilman Kantira went against compelling peer-reviewed scientific research provided by the American Kratom Association ("AKA") and failed. The City found that AKA's proposition of regulation was more practical than the Councilman's proposal of a total ban. 

Despite Councilman Kantira's good intentions, his tactics relied on emotions instead of facts. Councilman Kantira attempted to sway voters with a testimonial from a Pennsylvania woman claiming her 25-year-old son became addicted to Kratom, resulting in his eventual death. AKA was able to provide facts to the contrary. According to official records, the man died in an automobile accident. The accident was likely related to illegal drug use, as the man had publicly admitted to using drugs on social media.

This isn't the first time politicians have used fear-mongering to attack Kratom. In 2016, the pharmaceutical industry aimed its sights at Kratom, lobbying for a federal ban. After failing at the national level, the pharmaceutical industry and their political allies' campaign of disinformation now aims to convince local and state governments to ban the sale of Kratom. So far, out of the 14 states that have considered banning Kratom, none have adopted a ban. 

When considering whether to regulate or ban, the leading consideration is consumer protection. With Kratom, the biggest threat to consumers is potential adulteration. The majority of the issues that have arisen from this fast-growing industry have led to products erroneously labeled as Kratom. Club13 protects its customers by testing for all adulterants, including but not limited to fungi, pathogens, and heavy metals. AKA, who represents the growers and retailers in the industry, has spearheaded passing the Kratom Consumer Protection Act ("KCPA") at the state level. This act seeks to end Kratom adulteration and to classify Kratom as an all-natural product. 

The Kratom Consumer Protection Act is being considered state-by-state. At present, only Utah, Georgia, Arizona, and Oregon have successfully passed this act. However, like in Point Pleasant Beach, the debate continues nationwide. 

It didn't take Councilman Kantira long to realize this fight was lost. Kantira withdrew his motion after a mere two votes were cast, prompting a discussion of whether it was legally permissible to stop a roll call mid-vote. The council voted to table the ordinance, meaning, in theory, it can be brought up again for a vote as long as the text of the proposed law is not significantly modified. It remains unclear what the Councilman's immediate plans are, but AKA continues to lock down victories across the country.

https://www.americankratom.org/mediak/news/legislative-update-point-pleasant-beach,-nj.html


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Just What is Kratom? – The Hive Podcast

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with Kratom. In this podcast brought to you by In the Hive, Roger McDonough tells you what Kratom is and why people use it. Listen along as McDonough explores the world of this natural plant through personal testimonials of advocates to business owners, scientists to senators.

One guest, Utah State Senator Curtis Brambles, sponsored the Utah Kratom Consumer Protection Act, which protects the purity of distribution. Senator Brambles explains how he was inspired to sponsor this legislation after the death of his son-in-law, who passed away last year from opioid addiction. Senator Brambles is not only a user and advocate of Kratom but, apparently, is known to keep a bottle of Kratom on his desk.

The podcast then introduces Dr. Jack Henningfield, one of the world's leading experts on addiction and the behavioral, cognitive, and central nervous system (CNS) effects of drugs.  Dr. Henningfield takes us on a journey from it's indigenous roots in Southeast Asia to its newfound popularity in the United States. 

The podcast also gives the perspective of a Salt Lake City business owner who discusses with McDonough what enticed him to get in the industry. Inspired by public support, this business owner has grown his local business into a success story. 

New users, old users, or people curious about Kratom will find this podcast enlightening. Click the link provided and explore the culture surrounding this traditional Southeast Asian plant. But don't take it from me, listen for yourself.

 

Written by,
Madi Furlong 

The Hive - Just What is Kratom?

S.B. 58 Kratom Consumer Protection Act