Aloha! If you’re planning an unforgettable trip to Hawaii, or if you live on any of the eight beautiful islands that make up this picturesque paradise, you might be wondering about the legal status of kratom in Hawaii. Kratom is becoming extremely popular nationwide, and a growing number of islanders are discovering the benefits for themselves. But what does the law have to say? Is kratom legal in Hawaii? Let’s break it down.
Is Kratom Legal in Hawaii?
It is legal to enjoy kratom in Hawaii. However, in recent years, there have been some efforts to restrict kratom products in certain environments. In 2018, for instance, legislators introduced SB 2826, a set of regulatory guidelines related to highway safety. Among other things, the bill sought to add kratom to the state’s list of substances that contribute to impaired driving.
Though SB 2826 never went anywhere, the issue was reintroduced in 2019 with SB641, a similar highway safety bill that included kratom on the list of intoxicants for highway safety. Despite having a lot of initial traction, this bill too died in committee and was never made law.
Then, in 2020, state legislators introduced a bill that would have had much more serious ramification for kratom in Hawaii. Senate Bill 3064 sought to classify mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine—the two abundant alkaloids in kratom—as Schedule V drugs.
The bill was sponsored by seven state Democrats citing potential health concerns related to kratom alkaloids. It appears that the legislators took their cue from the Drug Enforcement Agency, which has labeled kratom as a drug of concern.
However, much of the controversy surrounding kratom stems from misunderstandings about the product and a lack of regulation. Since the FDA and other government agencies have neglected to regulate kratom products, it’s important for shoppers to do their own research to find kratom vendors that lab test their products so they know they’re buying pure, unadulterated kratom.
If you’re not careful, it’s easy to stumble on kratom products that contain synthetic ingredients, dangerously high alkaloid levels, and even bacteria like salmonella and E. coli. That’s why it’s important to understand the dangers of cheap kratom and buy exclusively from trusted, reputable brands.
What Is a Schedule V Drug and What Does It Mean for Kratom in Hawaii?
In Hawaii, a Schedule V drug is defined as a “drug or other substance [that] has a low potential for abuse relative to the drugs or other substances in schedule IV.” The drug is recognized for having medical benefits, but it may lead to physical or psychological dependence. Examples of Schedule V drugs in Hawaii include Lyrica, Lomotil, Motfen, and cough medicines with less than 200 milligrams of codeine.
Schedule V drugs usually require a doctor’s prescription. So if kratom were to be classified as such, it would essentially become a banned substance. Because kratom is not currently recognized as a treatment for any medical condition, doctors would be unlikely to prescribe it—and it wouldn’t be available over the counter either.
Thankfully, kratom’s alkaloids have not been classified as Schedule V drugs. The bill that would have established this classification died in committee. However, the fight is far from over.
The Hawaii Kratom Consumer Protection Act
Is kratom legal in Hawaii? Yes. But that’s not the whole issue. It’s also important to consider whether your kratom is safe and high-quality, and that’s where the Kratom Consumer Protection Act comes into play.
At the beginning of 2022, state legislators introduced HB2356, a bill that seeks to bring the Kratom Consumer Protection Act to Hawaii. This would be a game changer for kratom in Hawaii, as it would introduce the kinds of quality control protections that are missing at the federal level. Among other things, the Hawaii KCPA would:
- Require accurate, thorough labeling of kratom products
- Prohibit the sale of kratom with dangerous synthetic ingredients
- Prohibit the sale of contaminated kratom
- Ban kratom products containing more than 2% 7-hydroxymitragynine
- Prohibit minors from purchasing kratom
These regulations would necessitate independent lab testing of all kratom products, which would go a long way toward holding manufacturers accountable for the quality of their products and ensuring that kratom buyers can purchase without fear.
Kratom advocates have been pushing for the KCPA to be enacted in states across the nation. If the federal government won’t act, perhaps we can effect change at the state level and help to ensure a safer kratom marketplace for all. Kratom laws vary by state, but the KCPA could help to bring uniformity if enough states make it law.
While there has been a big push to get the KCPA enacted in Hawaii, there hasn’t been much movement in the legislature. If you’d like to see the KCPA become law in Hawaii (just as it has in Nevada, Arizona, Georgia, Utah, and Oklahoma), one simple way to help is to visit the Hawaii KCPA page and fill out the provided form.
What to Know When Buying Kratom in Hawaii
Kratom is legal in Hawaii, but not all products are worth your time and money. If you’re thinking of buying kratom in Hawaii, your best bet is to find kratom for sale online. Go with vetted, reputable manufacturers that have been in the business for a long time and that have a positive track record. Make sure that your products check all of the following boxes:
- Third-party lab tested
- Sourced from kratom farms in Southeast Asia (usually Indonesia)
- Satisfaction guaranteed
You may have to do a bit of research, but when you can buy with confidence, you can be assured of a much better kratom experience. So make sure you’re getting the real deal, and enjoy the finest kratom in the Aloha State!
Want to learn more about kratom quality and value? Start here:
Why Buying Cheap Kratom Can Be Dangerous