Kratom, a plant that has been used for centuries as a medicinal herb, has been recently banned from the U:U.S.’s list of controlled substances because of a lack of evidence of its harmful effects, according to an analysis by The Hill.
The DEA and the Department of Health and Human Services have said that it is the first known instance of kratom being used for medicinal purposes, but there’s no evidence that it can be safely used for any other purpose.
The Hill examined DEA and HHS documents on the ban, which was issued in December, and found that the agency has failed to conduct any research on kratom and found no credible scientific research on its benefits or risks.
“The DEA has not demonstrated that kratom poses a significant risk to the public health or safety,” the DEA said in a statement.
“We do not believe that the DEA’s analysis is appropriate and we will continue to work with the Department to address this issue.”
The DEA declined to comment on the Hill’s findings.
The White House is also not commenting on the DEA and its ban, citing an ongoing investigation into the importation of kampungs from China, which were also found to be contaminated.
In addition, the DEA has said that the ban is being implemented to prevent kampong imports into the U., a claim that has not been substantiated by credible research.
The government’s actions, however, have created a significant legal and regulatory headache for U.K.-based kratom manufacturers and sellers, who have been unable to obtain authorization to import their products in the U to fulfill their customers’ demand.
In response, kratom distributors have filed dozens of lawsuits against the DEA, and more are expected in the future.