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Maryland Sen. Young heard the voices of kratom advocates, and his staffer reports he will amend the bill with "language from Haddow and the American Kratom Association that would require users to be 21 and older, and added guidelines to make sure the product was unadulterated."
Maryland bills aim to restrict herbal substance kratom
By Kevin Brown Capital News Service Feb 1, 2020
ANNAPOLIS — Kratom, a substance that users told lawmakers they take as a pain and addiction treatment, would see more stringent regulation in Maryland under legislation making its way through the General Assembly. Some government agencies advise against using the substance, calling it dangerous — while opponents of the bill are advocating for safety standards instead.
Originating in southeast Asian countries, including Thailand and Indonesia, kratom is an herbal substance that comes from evergreen trees and has similar effects as opioids.
House bill 283 would categorize kratom as among the most dangerous controlled substances in Maryland, a list that includes heroin, LSD, ecstasy and a hallucinogen called peyote.
Proponents of the bill argue kratom’s similarity to opioids can lead to further abuse and addiction, while opponents say the substance, when regulated properly, can help people alleviate pain, and help those with opioid addictions overcome withdrawal.
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