Regardless of if you are new to kratom or if you have been using it for years, you’ve probably come across the American Kratom Association (AKA) many times. This advocacy group has been present for years to research and defend kratom and kratom users. But what is the American Kratom Association exactly? And, more importantly, what do they do and how can you collaborate with them? Keep reading below to learn more about this non-profit organization and its mission to keep kratom legal.
Why Is Kratom Controversial?
Kratom, also known as Mitragyna Speciosa, is a tree that grows in the rainforest areas of various Southeast Asian countries. The leaves of the plant have been used for centuries in those regions for various purposes. Typically, manual laborers of the area ingested kratom leaves to get extra energy and stimulation to face long working days.
In the past years, kratom has crossed the ocean to America, where you can find it online and in headshops. People in the US use kratom powder (made from crushed kratom leaves) to ease conditions such as pain, anxiety, and insomnia, to help them ease opiate withdrawal, or simply to get more energy and motivation.
Kratom users and advocates swear by the effectiveness of the plant and many of them claim that it has given them the ability to conduct a normal and productive life. However, the FDA has not regulated or approved Mitragyna Speciosa.
Despite kratom’s proven benefits, it has been under the scope of the authorities for a few years now. Back in 2016, the DEA initiated a process to ban the plant. But thanks to the efforts of the kratom community, this movement was terminated. But kratom was already on the public’s (and the Government’s) eye. Now, the FDA keeps kratom under scrutiny and many false allegations about the plant are being spread by them, including some alleged kratom deaths that have been later contradicted.
What Is Kratom Advocacy?
Due to kratom’s controversy and false claims about the plant, kratom advocacy is needed. But what does this mean? To be able to keep kratom legal and, as such, consumers’ access to kratom, it is necessary that people voice their experience with the plant and to let both the institutions and the general public know, how the plant has helped them and to contradict any false claims about it.
Being a kratom advocate means writing to your legal representatives, sharing your story in public hearings, social media, blogs or even with the general media to keep the plant legal. But this is something that should be organized. And this is exactly what the American Kratom Association is for. So, what is the American Kratom Association and what do they do? Keep reading below to find out.
What Is the American Kratom Association?
So, what is the American Kratom Association? Also known as AKA, the American Kratom Association is a non-profit organization established in 2014 to educate people on the plant and to preserve the consumers’ rights to keep having access to it.
Like any other consumer’s association, the AKA represents the kratom consumers and organizes the community. Additionally, it provides information and clarifies matters about the plant. To be able to do this, they regularly meet with lawmakers, law enforcement officers, and regulators. On the other hand, the AKA supports kratom scientific research and many scientific studies can be found on their website.
So, basically, the AKA is the main kratom advocate in the US.
What Does the American Kratom Association Do?
The AKA not only provides educated and scientific information about kratom, but they also do much more. Whenever a state, county or city show plans to ban kratom, the AKA is there to organize the kratom community to try to stop the ban. They do this by meeting with local authorities and legislators, speaking up in public hearings, and providing educated information on the plant.
In recent times, the AKA has doubled its efforts and is meeting with authorities in many states to present them with the “Kratom Consumer Protection Act”. A piece of legislation created to regulate access to kratom and to protect the consumer’s rights when purchasing it. This movement has been very successful so far and the Act was passed in Arizona, Utah, Nevada, and Georgia. And it’s pending in many other states, including Oregon, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, New York, New Jersey to name just a few.
They have also developed a “Good Manufacturing Practice Standards Program”. This is something that kratom vendors can review and put into place to make sure that all kratom products have a minimum quality before selling them to the public.
How to Collaborate with the American Kratom Association?
Now that you know what the American Kratom Association is, you may wonder how you can collaborate. Let’s see below some ways to help them:
- Making donations. Since the AKA is a non-profit organization, they rely on donations from the community to be able to continue their work. But if you don’t have the capacity or the will to make a cash donation, there are other ways to collaborate.
- Joining their forum. The AKA has an active forum where you can communicate with other members and stay on top of the news. By joining the forum, you can help others and share your story and experience.
- Joining their newsletter. The AKA newsletters will keep you informed of news and actions that will take place in your area.
- Kratom advocacy work. The kratom forum and AKA newsletter will help you identify where advocacy work is needed. There are many things you can do as a kratom advocate. You can attend public hearings, write to your local representative, share your story, etc.
So, if you want to come into action and be an active collaborator of the American Kratom Association, visit americankratom.org for more information.