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Jun 20, 2023

Florida Kratom Consumer Protection Act restricts sales of kratom products to those under 21

Media Contact: Alicia Manautou, PIO

A new law concerning the sale and distribution of kratom goes into effect on July 1, 2023. During the 2023 Legislative Session, the Florida Kratom Consumer Protection Act passed the legislature unanimously and makes it illegal to “sell, deliver, barter, furnish, or give, directly or indirectly, any kratom product to a person under 21 years of age.” For businesses in Florida this means there will be new regulations from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, one of which will require customers to present their identification for age verification, much like is already in place for alcohol and tobacco sales, before purchasing kratom.

What is Kratom?
Kratom is a product derived from kratom trees typically found in Southeast Asia. There are possible dangerous side effects associated with drinking kratom tea or consuming kratom in other ways.  According to the National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Drug Abuse: “’Kratom’ commonly refers to an herbal substance that can produce opioid- and stimulant-like effects. Kratom and kratom-based products are currently legal and accessible in many areas, though U.S. and international agencies continue to review emerging evidence to inform kratom policy. Is kratom safe? U.S. and international agencies have expressed concern that kratom products may cause serious harm. There are no uses for kratom approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the FDA has warned consumers not to use kratom products because of potential adverse effects. The FDA, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and NIDA support and conduct research to measure and better understand the short- and long-term safety risks of kratom use and inform policy around kratom regulation.”

According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, kratom is listed as a “drug and chemical of concern” because of its addictive nature and instances where it has caused psychotic symptoms, including hallucinations, delusion and confusion.
“The Florida Legislature reviewed the current information regarding the health effects of kratom. They determined that to promote the safety and health of children and young adults in Florida that kratom sales should be restricted to only those 21 and older. I encourage business owners and managers to educate their employees that it will be illegal to sell kratom to those who are under 21 and that they need to check IDs prior to a sale, just like they do for alcohol. We have great retailers in Polk County and we expect a smooth implementation of this new law. But for those who illegally sell kratom to those under 21, you will be criminally charged with a second degree misdemeanor and taken to jail.” – Grady Judd, Sheriff