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History of kratom legality in Iowa

At the beginning of 2014, legislators in Iowa introduced HF2355, a bill that if passed would make kratom illegal in that state as a Schedule I drug. The bill categorized kratom as a hallucinogenic substance, further citing it as having no health benefits, and a high potential for abuse.

Iowa Petitioners Call Out the Bill’s False Claims

Frustrating enough, kratom is not hallucinogenic (in fact, research shows that kratom may have anti-hallucinogenic properties), and Iowan petitioners were quick to jump on this false claim. Kratom advocates in Iowa pointed out that kratom is an herb from the same family as the coffee plant.

Furthermore, to provide evidence, the petitioners in Iowa cited peer-reviewed studies that assessed kratom’s potential for abuse or addiction was merely on par caffeinated beverages, such as coffee. A 2017 study used the 8-factor analysis method (the same factors used to determine controlled substances) to determine kratom’s potential for abuse. 

This scientific evidence revealed that the bill that would ban kratom was based on false claims that were challenged by research. 

Also in the petition, Iowan kratom advocates pointed out that there were no proven deaths caused by kratom. Although kratom has been found in the systems of deceased victims, so were other substances, such as known dangerous drugs. For this reason, kratom cannot be attributed to the cause of death.

The petition succeeded, and kratom has remained legal in Iowa through 2021.

  • Des Moines
  • Cedar Rapids
  • Davenport
  • Sioux City
  • Waterloo
  • Iowa City