Kratom’s legality is a controversial topic in the Hoosier State. In fact, kratom is banned in 6 cities in Indiana, even though it is legal at the state level.
So what gives? Why is this natural herb illegal in some parts of Indiana, but not statewide?
Let’s take a look at kratom’s murky legal status in Indiana and find out where it currently stands.
The Kratom Controversy in Indiana
Southeast Asian tropical tree Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa). It has been used traditionally for centuries for its stimulant and pain-relieving effects.
The active compounds in kratom – mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine – interact with opioid receptors in the brain. This produces sedation and pleasure when kratom is consumed in small doses.
In recent years kratom has soared in popularity in the United States. It’s estimated that 5 million Americans use kratom regularly. Advocates say it helps relieve pain, boost energy and ease opioid withdrawal.
However, there are also concerns about kratom’s safety and addictive potential. The FDA has warned against kratom use and even tried to ban it.
This has led to a patchwork of different kratom laws across the US. Currently, kratom is banned in 6 states but legal in most others – including Indiana.
Well, kind of…
Kratom Bans in Indiana Cities
In Indiana, kratom is legal at the state level. There is no statewide ban prohibiting kratom use, possession or sales.
However, several Indiana cities and counties have enacted local kratom bans:
- Kosciusko County – Possession of kratom is illegal in this Northern Indiana county.
- Merrillville – Kratom was banned in 2019 in Merrillville, a town in Northwest Indiana.
- Mishawaka – Mishawaka, adjacent to South Bend, banned sales of kratom in 2018.
- Munster – This town in Northwest Indiana prohibits kratom sales. Possession is still legal.
- Schererville – Kratom sales are banned in Schererville, but not possession.
- St. Joseph County – Kratom is illegal to possess, use or buy anywhere in this Northern Indiana county.
So in these cities and counties, kratom is prohibited entirely or sales are at least banned. But in the rest of Indiana, kratom remains legal for now.
The Push to Ban Kratom in Indiana
In 2020, there was an attempt to ban kratom statewide in Indiana.
Senator Eddie Melton introduced Senate Bill 284 which would have made kratom a Schedule I controlled substance.
If passed, this would have made all kratom possession and sales a felony offense.
The kratom ban bill was strongly opposed by the American Kratom Association and other advocacy groups. In the end, SB 284 did not pass.
But this highlights that there is an appetite among some Indiana lawmakers to outlaw kratom altogether. Similar statewide bans have passed in nearby states like Wisconsin.
So the legality of kratom in Indiana remains uncertain going forward. More local and statewide bans are possible depending on shifting political winds.
Is Kratom Legal to Buy in Indiana?
Since there is no state law banning kratom in Indiana, it is generally legal to buy and sell kratom.
There are many kratom vendors that will ship fresh kratom powder and capsules to Indiana residents.
You can also find kratom for sale in smoke shops, head shops and vape stores throughout much of Indiana.
However, kratom cannot be sold legally in places where local ordinances prohibit it – like Kosciusko County or the city of Mishawaka.
You also won’t find kratom in stores in states bordering Indiana where kratom is banned entirely, like Wisconsin or Tennessee.
So legality depends on exactly where in Indiana you want to buy kratom. It pays to check local laws before purchasing.
Indiana Kratom Laws: Possession & Use
Since kratom is legal statewide, simple possession and use of kratom is allowed throughout most of Indiana.
You do not need a prescription or license to buy, have or consume kratom powder or supplements if you are an Indiana resident over 18.
The exceptions are the handful of counties and towns that have enacted local kratom prohibitions. In these locations, possession may be illegal.
For example, having kratom in Kosciusko County could potentially result in criminal charges, even though it is perfectly legal elsewhere in the state.
Indiana also prohibits selling or giving kratom to anyone under the age of 18. Only adults may legally purchase and use kratom in Indiana.
Is Kratom Addictive? Indiana’s Concerns
Much of the controversy around kratom centers on whether it has potential for abuse and addiction.
- The FDA warns that kratom affects the same opioid brain receptors as morphine and can lead to dependence.
- Yet kratom supporters counter that risks are low when it is used responsibly in moderation.
Addiction is a major concern for lawmakers. But others say kratom is safer than opioids and can help recovering addicts.
More research is needed to fully understand kratom’s effects and risks. But the grwing popularity of this herb virtually guarentees continued debate.
The Future of Kratom in Indiana
Will kratom remain legal in the Hoosier State? Or will it eventually face a statewide ban in Indiana?
Much depends on how attitudes evolve toward this unusual Southeast Asian plant.
Kratom advocates can look to states like Utah that have passed Kratom Consumer Protection Acts to keep kratom legal.
But they also must be wary of shifting political attitudes that have led to prohibition in neighboring Wisconsin and Tennessee.
For now, kratom occupies a gray area in Indiana. Legal statewide yet banned in a handful of communities.
The future of kratom in Indiana remains cloudy. Only time will tell whether more communities follow the lead of Kosciusko County in outlawing this controversial herb.
The Bottom Line: Is Kratom Legal in Indiana?
- Kratom is legal statewide in Indiana at the moment.
- But possession and sales are banned in 6 specific counties and cities that have prohibited it.
- There was an attempt to ban kratom statewide in 2020, but it did not pass.
- For now, kratom remains legal in most of Indiana except for the localities that have outlawed it.
- The legal status of kratom in Indiana remains uncertain going forward as public attitudes continue to shift.
So in summary, kratom is allowed in Indiana, but with several exceptions in communities that have cracked down on the controversial herb. Always check local laws before buying or using kratom products.