Is Kratom Legal in Kentucky? (2023)

Written by Wade Paul
Last Updated 10 months ago

Wade Paul

Founder & Editor-In-Chief

Wade Paul is the founder and editor-in-chief at

Kratom is a medicinal herb that’s been used for several hundred years in Southeast Asia for alleviating pain and fatigue.

This tropical plant species has endured a constant stream of controversy with the FDA — as most medicinal plants have.

Nevertheless, kratom continues to survive attempts for prohibition in the United States. Kentucky lawmakers have tried to ban kratom, but the move was rejected, and kratom remains unregulated within the state.

Here we’ll cover the current laws involving kratom in the state of Kentucky, explore some of the rocky past, and explore where the future may be headed.

Is Kratom Legal In Kentucky?

Kratom is unregulated in Kentucky. To this day, no attempt to ban it has worked, though, in 2016, KY Bill SB136 sought to list kratom as a Schedule I substance, categorizing it as a synthetic opioid. However, the bill died in committee.

Late the following year, the anti-kratom lobby again tried to ban it with Bill HR 2851 (SITSA Act) as an attempt to amend the Controlled Substances Act.

This bill sought to include a new category of controlled substances called Schedule A Substances, including drugs with effects similar to other controlled substances. Kratom would have been on this list, but fortunately, this amendment died in the chamber.

The most recent attempt was in 2022, and it sought to regulate kratom with SB 210, but this died in committee.

Learn more about kratom laws in the United States.

Frankfort, Kentucky

Where to Buy Kratom In Kentucky

In Kentucky, kratom’s legal status is the same as at the federal level: it’s unregulated.

This means two things, one good and one bad.

Because it’s unregulated, you can buy and consume it without any problems — however, it also means anyone can sell it.

Because of this, it’s important to take precautions to minimize the chance of buying poor quality or tainted kratom.

There are two ways to buy kratom in Kentucky, online and in-store. Considering kratom’s legal status in Kentucky, online is the safer option. In the following section, we’ll explain why.

Buying Kratom Online

Buying kratom online is safer due to several factors, but quality takes first place on the list.

It’s easier to find online vendors that sell tested and certified kratom. Local stores rarely offer this assurance, leaving you to guess and hope for the best — not exactly a risk you want to take.

Not only are local stores less likely to sell certified products, but they usually go through several hands before hitting the shelves. This translates to older products and a higher chance of being adulterated, not to mention higher costs.

That leads to the next point. Online vendors are usually far cheaper than buying in-store. Fewer middlemen and lower overhead cost equal significant savings for the customer.

Physical stores have limited space. The demand for kratom is relatively low (at least not enough to support a business), so companies need to sell other products alongside it.

This limits your options and means the staff likely doesn’t know much about kratom, leaving unanswered questions.

One other thing to consider is discretion. While some people aren’t worried about this, it can be a big deal to others. Ordering online allows you to order from the comfort of your home in complete privacy.

There are many great companies to choose from, and Kona Kratom, Star Kratom, and VIP Kratom are among the best.

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Buying Kratom In-Store

Sometimes you have to go to a physical store. Time is usually the most significant factor since you can walk out with what you need versus waiting for it to ship.

Since the in-store option is always available in states where kratom is unregulated, a simple Google search for “kratom near me” gives you several suppliers in your vicinity.

Here are five stores located in Kentucky that sell kratom, all with good reviews:

  1. Miracle Kratom (Bellevue)
  2. The Botany Bay (Lexington)
  3. Avery’s Kratom Barrel (Franklin)
  4. The Dandi Lion (Paducah)
  5. Discount Smokes (Louisville)

Related: What’s The Cheapest Kratom? Save Money On Strains, Blends, and Bulk Orders.

What to Look for When Buying Kratom

If you decide to buy kratom online, you’re off to a good start. However, this is no guarantee of quality product or that you’ll get the right kratom for you.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when buying kratom.

AKA Certification

The American Kratom Association (AKA) is a private, non-profit company that began operating in 2015. Since then, the organization has been tirelessly researching, educating, and advocating on behalf of kratom consumers.

Kratom vendors join the AKA’s affiliate program but, in doing so, must submit products to an annual audit conducted by a third-party lab. Any company that fails to meet the set standards is no longer certified.

By prioritizing vendors with an AKA certificate, you’re likely to get high-quality kratom.

Company Reputation

A company’s reputation speaks of something as crucial as the quality of its products: its ethics.

In user reviews, you’ll find all kinds of valuable information to help you make the right decision when choosing a kratom supplier.

A company with poor customer service or products will have unhappy customers.

These vendor reviews can help you get started.


Kratom can cause various effects but is categorized by strain, making it easy to know what to expect.

Several strains of kratom, such as Maeng Da, Bali, and Sumatra, can be confusing. However, by separating kratom strains according to their vein color, we better understand the unique characteristics of each one.

Kratom looks the same once processed; vein color is noticeable in the leaf but not powdered kratom.

Red Vein Kratom

Red vein kratom contains the highest amount of 7-hydroxymitragynine. This mu-opioid agonist alkaloid causes sedative and euphoric effects, making it a potent painkiller.

White Vein Kratom

White vein kratom produces the most stimulating effects. These strains have a high amount of mitragynine, an alkaloid that interacts with opioid and serotonergic receptors, providing increased focus and concentration.

White kratom is a fantastic nootropic and can help you perform any task that requires mental effort and lateral or creative thinking.

Green Vein Kratom

Green vein kratom is the more balanced option of the three. Because of its balanced alkaloid profile, the effects are neither too stimulating nor too sedative and provide the benefits of the other strains, but more subtly.

What Are People Using Kratom for?

More and more people worldwide, along with the scientific community, continue to discover therapeutic uses for this traditional herb.

Different users have different goals, and, generally speaking, there’s no right or wrong reason. However, there are common trends among kratom users. Here are the most popular uses and which strains work best for each.

Energy & Focus

If you’re looking to increase concentration and improve focus, white kratom strains are best. Their high concentration of mitragynine provides nootropic effects that last for hours.

People say it causes stimulation similar to a cup of coffee.

Find the Best Kratom Strains for Energy & Focus here.

Anxiety & Depression

If you suffer from anxiety or depression, you’re not alone. Nearly 25% of the U.S. population suffers from one or both of these conditions.

Fortunately, kratom is an excellent aid in treating these conditions.

Although kratom is not a cure for depression or anxiety, its effects may alleviate symptoms and help you on your road to recovery.

If you suffer from anxiety, go for red kratom. The sedative effects are calming. On the other hand, if you suffer from depression, you’ll notice the most benefits with white vein kratom.

The stimulation and euphoria provided can help improve mood and give a boost of energy.

Opioid Withdrawal

Opioid withdrawal is one of the most challenging scenarios a person can endure, both physically and psychologically. Its effects range from indomitable anxiety to involuntary leg movements.

As an atypical opioid, kratom is one of the few treatments available for opioid withdrawal — and it’s highly effective. Kratom, especially red vein, provides opioid-like sedative and euphoric effects, which considerably lessen the unpleasant symptoms.

While it’s true kratom is also addictive, the withdrawal symptoms are not as severe as opioid withdrawal. It’s also unlikely to cause an overdose.

Pain Relief

Before treating any pain, it’s necessary to find out where it comes from. The pain you’re feeling is a signal that something’s not working well, so you should always find out the source before trying to eliminate it with painkillers.

That said, use red kratom for pain relief. It’s an excellent analgesic because of its interaction with opioid receptors and can be as potent as other opioids — without side effects.

Is Kratom Safe?

This is a common question, as many people are concerned about kratom’s effects on the opioid system. Due to misinformation, there’s fear that it’s as dangerous as prescription painkillers and will add to the opioid epidemic.

However, kratom is a very safe herb as long as you consume it responsibly. It’s only risky if misused.

Fortunately, there’s an easy way to avoid problems with kratom: consume it as infrequently as possible and in the smallest effective amount. Chances are, you won’t suffer any side effects.

Because of its opioid-like effects, kratom can be addictive. However, it’s minor compared to opioid addiction and avoidable.

Also, never use it with other medications or drugs without speaking to your doctor. Because of how it’s metabolized, it can interact with many substances.

Related: List of Kratom/Drug Interactions

Side Effects of Kratom

If you consume too much kratom or do it too often, don’t be surprised if you encounter adverse effects such as:

If you’ve just started using kratom, your body may take some time to get used to it. Don’t be afraid if you suffer from some stomach upset; this is normal for the first few times and subsides quickly.

As with most things, don’t take kratom while pregnant or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Kentucky state of United States flag waving in the cloudy sky 3D illustration

What’s the Future of Kratom In Kentucky?

Attempts to ban kratom in Kentucky failed miserably, so common sense tells us that it’s unlikely to be banned in the future.

Hopefully, kratom will be legal everywhere soon.

If you live in Kentucky and are looking for a good place to order kratom online, check out brands like Kona Kratom, Star Kratom, or VIP Kratom to get high-quality and safe products (our top three vendors).