Kratom in Castle Rock
Maintaining Castle Rock’s safety and community character is a top priority. With that in mind, Town staff researched kratom within the community. Kratom is an unregulated herbal substance found in the leaves of a Southeast Asian tree. Those leaves can be made into a tea, chewed or made into a capsule. The active ingredients in kratom have effects similar to an amphetamine or opioids and have been used for various purposes, such as pain relief. Currently, there are several businesses in Town that sell kratom. The Town in fall 2018 received an inquiry about a possible kratom bar. This kratom bar would be similar to a coffee shop or café. Following that inquiry, the Town took a proactive look at kratom and potential businesses in Town.Town Council in December 2018 approved an ordinance to provide a temporary suspension on the establishment of new businesses related to kratom sales. This ordinance allowed Town staff the opportunity to further survey and collaborate with both the kratom industry and regulatory agencies to identify, and potentially regulate, kratom sales within the Town.
Currently, many federal agencies, including the FDA and DEA, are studying kratom due to concerns about potential abuse, quality control and marketing practices. Potential regulations that could be considered include age restrictions and limitations of onsite consumption.
About our process
Town staff collaborated with both the kratom industry and regulatory agencies to survey and discuss potential kratom regulations. As part of that process, the Town provided opportunities for community feedback:
Castle Rock Kratom Regulation Review and Advisory RoundtableThis meeting was held Feb. 22. Watch a video recording of the meeting, which featured presentations from:
- American Kratom Assoc.
- Kratom Trade Assoc.
- K Chill
- Smoker Friendly
- Douglas County Coroner
- Tri County Health
- Castle Rock Police Department
Public open house
Town staff collected public feedback on a potential local regulation related to kratom both online, and at an April open house.
The proposed restriction received unanimous support from the national kratom organizations and local businesses that participated in the Kratom Regulation Review and Advisory Roundtable.
Town to regulate kratom sales to minorsTown Council on June 4, 2019, adopted an ordinance restricting kratom sales to individuals under the age of 18. The ordinance is set to take effect July 4, 2019.
The ordinance will in no way criminalize the possession nor consumption of kratom for any age group. Rather, the regulation will require businesses selling kratom to ensure a customer is at least 18 years old, similar to the existing requirement for tobacco products. The regulation will provide penalties for any business selling kratom to a person under age 18.