So what is Kratom? Why is it valued by so many millions of people across the US? What are the differences between the colors, strains, and blends?
Kratom is native to Southeast Asia. It occurs naturally on several islands in Indonesia (primarily Borneo, Hulu Kapuas, and Ketapang). It also grows in Thailand, Malaysia, and the Philippines. Upwards of 100% of the kratom in the USA comes from Indonesia. At this time, Kratom is banned in Malaysia and was banned in Thailand (due to the government realizing it would interfere with their opium trade and the money that brings so they shut it down until now), it was unscheduled and is now legal for native Thai people to use but is not yet legal for export as of Jan, 2020. Kratom has been used for over 1,500 years in these regions of the world where they pick and chew the leaves for many reasons, not the least of which is, promotion of energy for working, relief from minor aches and pains, increased mental clarity, and much more. In the USA, most kratom is sold in powdered form (either in capsules or bulk powder.) This is created by drying the leaves in Indonesia, and then grinding them to a fine powder before packaging it in bundles and shipping to the USA. Proper Kratom is pure plant leaves and nothing else.
There has never been a certified proven death of kratom overdose anywhere in the world. That does not include adulterated products (such as Krypton which was a mix of Kratom and O-DSMT, a tramadol analogue which caused 9 deaths linked to overdose from the tramadol.)
There are about 29 deaths in the US in the last 10 years that are possibly linked to Kratom. There is simply not enough data from these emergency room doctors’ notes to determine the cause of death. They appeared to have only Kratom in their systems at time of death. But what is not identified is if they had previous health issues, were on other medications that may have had a contraindication with Kratom, or many other possibilities. Yet the FDA has mounted an assault on Kratom as early as 2014.
Currently, there is an Import alert on Kratom which makes importing the product particularly difficult. It grants Customs and Border Protection the authority to seize any shipment containing kratom for any reason whatsoever. It’s still 100% legal to import into the US minus the 5 states that have banned it as of 2020, but massive shipments have been seized and destroyed for no good reason resulting in losses in the millions of dollars to those companies doing the importing.
Kratom is currently illegal in the following States: Arkansas, Alabama, Wisconsin, Indiana, Vermont, and Rhode Island. It is also banned in Sarasota County in Florida, San Diego, CA, and locally, Monument, CO has banned the sales of Kratom within city limits. There are a few counties/cities that have banned it across the country but only a handful.
We support the American Kratom Association who is our amazing Kratom Advocacy non-profit group. It is because of their hard work, and the power of the millions of people who use Kratom daily (currently estimated to be over 18 million in the US!) They are currently working on bringing a Bill to states across the country called the Kratom Consumer Protection Act. This bill, when passed in a state, prevents kratom manufacturers from doing shady things with the product. It requires a minimum purchase age of 18 (21 in some states), requires that manufacturers use cGMP standards and be qualified by GMP auditors yearly (more about that later), and requires very specific safety protocols and testing of each and every bag of Kratom made and sold in that state.
Laughing Lion is, to our knowledge, the first GMP Qualified vendor in the State of Colorado, and one of less than 15 Kratom companies in the entire country currently equipped for GMP standards and qualified! As of February, 2020, Laughing Lion has become fully cGMP Qualified and is a member of the AKA’s GMP program! This allows us to continue selling our products and provide many products to smaller vendors who will no longer be able to produce kratom once the KCPA passes in their respective states. Colorado is on a list of 21 states the AKA plan to get the bill passed in during 2020.
At this time, we believe that Kratom is generally safe in the USA. The DEA is the only national authority that can ban kratom in the country as a whole. And they have decided that they will not ban kratom unless the current studies that are being sponsored and conducted result in a statement that Kratom has no medicinal benefits. The National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) has granted the University of Florida, over 7 million dollars to study Kratom over the next 5 years! Specifically, one study is for studying the two primary alkaloids in Kratom, Mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine and it’s effects and uses in humans. And the second, is to study the plant as a whole for its potential to help people with chronic pain, addiction therapy, withdrawal relief, and much more!
Kratom has more than 47 currently identified alkaloids present in the plant leaves. The two most recognized Alkaloids are Mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. Many believe that Mitragynine is singularly responsible for the strength of a kratom batch. However, we have determined this is unlikely to be true. Just like the difference between using Cannabis flower vs dabbing or a pure THC extract, there is a significant difference that can be “felt” when one removes the other components that are present in Kratom. We strongly believe in keeping Kratom as close to nature as possible. That is why we do not get involved in kratom extracts at this time. The amount of 7-hydroxymitragynine in kratom leaves is almost undetectable. Usually a couple tenths of a percent in total concentration. When someone concentrates kratom, they should reduce or remove the 7-hydroxy because the current science we have suggests that in higher concentrations than occur in nature, it could lead to a higher abuse potential.
Thus, what we sell is simply Kratom leaf powder/capsules. Kratom is available in many “strains”, “colors”, and “blends”. However, there is much confusion surrounding these differences.
Kratom Colors: Kratom, Mitragyna Speciosa, is a single species of tree. Growing 25-100’ tall or more and fast growing at that. Our own indoor grow has seen 6 feet of growth in 8 months! There is no “Red Kratom Tree” or “White Kratom Tree”.
Green Vein Kratom are the mature leaves of the tree picked and dried indoors or in shade.
White Vein Kratom are smaller, immature leaves that are picked prior to full growth.
Red Vein Kratom are mature leaves that are dried in the sun causing them to turn darker into a red/brown color.
Bentuangie is a standard green leaf that is first placed in large clear plastic bags and left in the sun to oxidize and ferment for days and then dried out in the sun once the desired color is reached. This oxidation results in a very dark brown/ruddy color that also changes the effects of the leaf and provides a much sweeter and earthier taste.
Differences between the colors:
Green Kratom is generally recognized for its well-balanced effects. Purported to promote mental clarity, mood lift, energy, aid with mild aches and pains, and it’s best liked during the day.
White Kratom is generally recognized for its increased promotion of energy, mental focus, and potential to aid mood lifting.
Red Kratom is generally recognized for its promotion of relaxation, calm, feelings of wellbeing, mild euphoria, and the strongest of the 3 to promote reduction of discomfort from mild muscle aches and pains (such as from overused muscles).
These colors are more important in terms of choosing kratom for use than the actual strains themselves. Since there is only one tree, the differences between the actual strains are minute. The power of the mind to influence what one “feels” affects the differences more than any perceptible difference between them from a scientific standpoint. The “Placebo” effect is incredibly powerful. Many long-time Kratom users will swear they can tell drastic differences, but we’ve seen that in about 95% of cases, changing the “strain” but calling it the same thing, people don’t notice any difference at all. Even knowing this truth, the “placebo” effect still causes differences to be felt when I personally use the different strains.
Where Kratom is harvested:
The vast majority of our kratom is harvested on the Island of Borneo on farms where the trees are properly cared for and allowed to reach their full maturity and alkaloid potential!
Differences Between Strains:
Maeng Da: The most popular strain in the US and is a “pure strain”, not mixed with other leaf. Many believe it to be the best kratom out there or the “strongest”. However, this is simply not true. While it’s an excellent product, it is no stronger than any other strain and the strength is simply dependent on the particular batch. Generally thought to be on the more energetic side for all 3 strain colors.
Bali: is a blend of a couple of different strains. Red Bali, our #2 best selling strain actually contains a small amount of white leaf in it. Generally thought to be more balanced and somewhat relaxing vs energizing.
LLH Blends: These proprietary blends are what makes our Kratom unique in the industry!
Electrobuzz: An all White Blend that is one of our best selling blends combining 4 different whites designed to provide the best possible promotion of energy and mood lifting.
Fuzzy Blanket: Our #1 Selling Product! Winner of 1st Place from Kratom Vendor Reviews.com it is a blend of Green and Red kratom that provides the greatest combination of relaxation, promotion of wellbeing, and aid with relaxing before bed. Comfort for tired/sore muscles is it’s hallmark.