Possible Environmental and Ecological Damages Due to Possible Future Kratom Ban

Authors Avatar by franssaragih22gmailcom (student)

BCO118 Environmental Sustainability Prof. Dr. H. Haas

Possible Environmental and Ecological Damages Due to Possible Future Kratom Ban

  1. Introduction

Many people believe that the natural supplement kratom is a safer and more potent substitute for prescription opioids. Several nations in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia, are home to this magnificent tropical plant. A worldwide prohibition is about to be planned, though.

Kratom contains naturally occurring kratom alkaloids, such as mitragynine and its derivative 7-hydroxymitragynine, which are particularly beneficial to human health. The alkaloid is distinctive in that it interacts with opioid receptors in a manner comparable to morphine. But unlike morphine, mitragynine tricks the body into producing endorphins by making it think it is. Mitragynine mimics the release of endorphins, to put it another way.

Having stated that, while not being an opiate, mitragynine behaves like an opioid. The benefits exist without carrying the same risks that morphine or other opioids do. As a result, prior to the FDA's several dubious intentions to outlaw it, physicians in the U.S., Europe, or other countries used kratom medically to treat opiate withdrawal.

  1. Problem Identification

The FDA asserts that the prohibition of kratom is due to its addictive, abuse-prone, and hazardous properties. 44 fatalities with the presence of kratom occurred between 2011 and 2017. In the majority of those instances, there was no evidence that kratom contributed to or caused mortality. The evidence was too sketchy, in that the FDA’s proposed ban has been rejected by the DEA, WHO, and the UN.

Nobody outside of the FDA is certain of the reasons why it wants to outlaw kratom so badly that it hasn't given up trying to propose a national and international outlaw since 2016. Recent requests by the FDA to "reauthorize the Prescription Drug User Fee Act, or PDUFA," have been made to Congress. The FDA may have the power to forbid registration of any dietary supplements under the changes it has proposed, thus outlawing all kratom products.

Several theories propose that the ban's true motivation is a trade war. If used properly and with a doctor's approval, kratom is so beneficial and efficient that it might put the future of pharmaceutical businesses in jeopardy. Kratom has become a very successful industry. Between 3 and 5 million Americans use kratom. Each month, the country imports thousands of tons of kratom, with the largest exporter being the Indonesian state of West Borneo. The value of kratom in West Borneo alone reached $139 million USD in 2020–2021, according to data from a local cooperative.

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  1. Consequences If Kratom Receives Global Ban

  1. Deforestation Damage

Millions of kratom trees will need to be felled around the world, particularly in Southeast Asia and Indonesia, if the FDA's plan for a global kratom ban becomes law.

The plant known as kratom only grows in specific ecological regions. There are over 44 million kratom trees in only the Kapuas Hulu Regency of Indonesia's West Borneo area. Kratom plantations span 11,225 hectares in the Kapuas Hulu regency, according to information from the Department of Cooperatives, SMEs, and Trade (2020). 44,491,317 different kratom tree specimens, grown by 18,120 ...

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