The Kratom Consumer Protection Act, or KCPA, is a piece of legislation written by the American Kratom Association and is currently being promoted at the state level throughout the US in one form or another. The goal of the legislation is for states to adopt common sense regulations that safeguard the consumer and introduce accountability for vendors. Read below to find out the details of the proposed legislation and how it may affect you.
Regulation vs Prohibition and Criminalization
There is a big difference between regulating a product and enacting laws that specifically prohibit consenting adults from purchasing it. With regulation, products are allowed to be sold but there are rules in place governing how they can be marketed and manufactured. With prohibition or criminalization, all sales of the product are illegal.
There are many reasons why regulation is a better option than prohibition or criminalization. To start with, regulation prevents crime. When a product is prohibited or only available on the black market, there is a greater incentive for people to produce and sell it illegally.
This leads to a rise in organized crime and violence. In addition, regulation promotes safety. With regulation comes education and labeling requirements that ensure consumers know what they are buying and how to use it safely.
For example, let’s take a look at alcohol. Alcohol is a regulated substance. There are rules in place governing how it can be manufactured, marketed, and sold. These regulations help to prevent crime and promote safety.
In the US, alcohol regulation has led to a decrease in alcohol-related deaths. In fact, studies show that regulation has reduced alcohol-related deaths by 30-60%.
Compare this to the prohibition of alcohol in the 1920s. The prohibition of alcohol did not prevent crime or promote safety. In fact, it led to a rise in organized crime and violence. It also resulted in more people drinking unsafely and dying from alcohol-related causes.
The regulation of Kratom through the Kratom Consumer Protection Act or similar legislation will have similar benefits. It will prevent crime and promote safety. It will also provide consumers with the information they need to make safe, informed choices about Kratom.
Check out our write-up on kratom’s legality across the United States to get a better idea of the direction we’re headed and where further efforts are needed.
The Goal of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act
The goal of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act is to promote regulation rather than complete prohibition. This keeps bad products off the market and keeps kratom out of the hands of those too young to use a product best consumed by adults.
Under this proposed legislation, producers would be required to accurately disclose product contents on labels, sell only unadulterated products, and impose limits on the concentration of key alkaloid, 7-hydroxymitragynine, in kratom preparations.
This would protect consumers from adulterated and mislabeled products, while ensuring that kratom remains available to consenting adults. The legislation also imposes restrictions on the sale of kratom to those under the age of 18.
This is because adults use kratom more responsibly than adolescents and tend to make more educated decisions. The Act delegates these regulatory responsibilities to state and local government agencies.
Government Agencies vs Private Sector
The private sector has been largely responsible for the safe distribution of kratom products thus far. Companies in the industry have had to self-regulate based on what they feel the likely rules would be if they were in place. This leaves a lot of room for interpretation and holds nobody accountable for actually following their own rules.
The Kratom Consumer Protection Act will create a partnership between state and governmental agencies who will help enforce regulations while still allowing the private sector to continue their vital role in supplying quality kratom products.
This is important as it allows for both public and private entities to work together in order to protect American consumers. It also allows state and local governments to tailor regulations specific to their needs.
This is in contrast to a complete prohibition model, which would require a federal agency to create regulations that would be applicable nationwide. This is not ideal as it does not take into account the diverse needs of different states.
The Kratom Consumer Protection Act strikes the perfect balance between regulation and freedom. It allows governmental agencies to enforce regulations while still allowing the private sector to play a vital role in supplying safe, quality kratom products.
It is important to remember that regulations exist for a reason. They promote safety and prevent malign participants from damaging industries. When it comes to kratom, we need regulations that protect American consumers from adulterated and mislabeled products. The Kratom Consumer Protection Act does just that.
Penalties for Violators
Violators of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act could face stiff penalties, including fines and imprisonment. This is necessary in order to create a deterrent for those who would seek to profit from selling dangerous and adulterated kratom products. By working together we can make it clear that violating the KCPA will not be tolerated.
Penalties for violating the Act are left up to the individual state’s lawmakers and the enforcement is left up to the government agencies assigned the responsibility in each instance of the bill. As per the regulations that have so far been imposed in states adopting KCPA-like laws, violators are subject to anything from fines starting at $250 to jail terms of up to a year.
How Does This Affect Me?
The Kratom Consumer Protection Act is still in its early stages, but if passed it would introduce some common sense regulations that would safeguard American consumers. If you are concerned about how this may affect you, please reach out to your state legislators and let them know that you support the KCPA. Together we can ensure that kratom remains safe and accessible for all Americans.
Examples in the News
- Kratom Advocates Push For Legislation In Utah
- AKA Seeks To Work With FDA On Kratom Regulations
Both articles discuss the efforts of the American Kratom Association to promote the Kratom Consumer Protection Act at the state level. The first article discusses how the AKA is working with lawmakers in Utah to get the Kratom Consumer Protection Act introduced in that state.
The second article discusses how the AKA is seeking to work with the FDA on kratom regulations. These articles provide an overview of the KCPA and its goals, as well as discussing some of the ways it may affect consumers and producers if enacted.
The Bill’s Contents
As it is written, the AKA’s Kratom Consumer Protection Act seeks the following requirements:
- Product labeling must be truthful
- Kratom products must be free of any non-kratom substances that could injure consumers
- Kratom must not contain any controlled substances
- Products must not contain 7-hydroxymitragynine in a concentration higher than 2% of total alkaloids
- Products must not contain synthetic alkaloids
- Labels must feature concentrations of mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine
- No sales to those under 18 years of age
Not all states who have adopted kratom regulations are using the AKA’s version of the legislation. Some states have opted for less stringent versions, perhaps leaving out labeling requirements or the restrictions on synthetic alkaloids. Other state versions include provisions for criminal violations and state regulatory agency involvement.
Some even allow for the possibility of civil penalties to be sought from violators. It is ultimately up to each jurisdiction to decide how to write their own laws. The AKA’s KCPA serves as a sort of boilerplate document for these purposes.
An Alternate Perspective
Advocates of the Kratom Consumer Protection Act claim that regulation will benefit consumers and vendors alike. On the customer side, their argument is that it will keep harmful products and bad players out of the picture and will add accountability for vendors.
On the vendor side of things, the view is that legislation will add credibility and legitimacy to an industry that is currently self-regulated for the most part. However, regulation is still a restriction on a plant that should be entirely legal to possess and sell without government interference.
Unnecessary regulatory conditions and compliance fees will hurt small kratom vendors and will undeniably skew the market share in favor of the larger players in the industry. There are some that feel that the KCPA will do nothing but provide insulation and greater revenue for the American Kratom Association’s big donors.
At Socratic Solutions, we remain neutral in our stance regarding this matter. It is up to you as an individual to decide where you stand on this issue.
The Kratom Consumer Protection Act is a much-needed piece of legislation that will protect consumers and promote responsible use. If you are a consumer, it is important to voice your support for this act.
Let your state legislators know that you want them to adopt the Kratom Consumer Protection Act. The more voices we have speaking up in favor of kratom, the more likely it is that our legislators will listen.
Thanks for reading! I hope this provides some clarity on what the KCPA is and why it’s important. As always, please feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Stay safe and healthy!