Florida House Bill 179, the Kratom Consumer Protection Act (KCPA) was signed into law by Governor Ron Desantis on June 2, 2023.
The law explicitly prohibits the sale of kratom to those under 21 years of age. It also prohibits adulterants that make the product stronger or more toxic, a level of 7-hydroxymitragynine that exceeds 2% of alkaloids (which is high compared to fresh leaf and leaf powder kratom), synthetic alkaloids (which have yet to be found in kratom products), and residual solvents.
Labels on all kratom products must “include directions for the safe and effective use of the product, including, but not limited to, a suggested serving size”. Labels are prohibited from listing “any claim that the product is intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any medical condition or disease”.
The 3-page law lists monetary penalties for violations, but it does not name the enforcement agency, nor allocates funds for enforcement. This will likely be determined in the future. Usually, Departments of Health or Agriculture are responsible for enforcing laws, and for vendor registration and product testing.
Requirements for product testing and vendor registration are not outlined in the Florida KCPA.
Some KCPA laws, as in Oregon, allocate funds for regular enforcement of the law. Other state laws, such as the one in Oklahoma, are reactive in nature, meaning that while the state did not allocate funds for regular enforcement and product testing, the state has the power to penalize the processor or retailer should they discover tainted products or products sold to minors.
The act is also a sign that Florida is more likely to further regulate, rather than ban kratom. This is good news for kratom science, as the University of Florida College of Pharmacy is leading the world in kratom research. A state ban on a substance severely hinders the study of that substance in the state, especially in a state university like UF.
We will continue to follow developments in the implementation of the Florida KCPA and all state and federal kratom regulations.