October 21, 2019

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Kratom Crackdown re: Dietary Guidelines

FDA announces seizure of dietary supplements containing kratom.

  • FDA has many tools in its arsenal to protect the public from adulterated, misbranded, and/or dangerous food and dietary supplement products; these include the Agency’s inspection power and various enforcement authorities (e.g., Warning Letters, mandatory recall orders in class I situations, administrative detention, seizure, suspension of facility registration).  Under its administrative detention authority, FDA can detain a food or dietary supplement product if the Agency has reason to believe the product is adulterated or misbranded.  The Agency can keep detained products out of the marketplace for a maximum of 30 days while it determines whether to take further enforcement action, such as seizure.

  • Earlier this month, FDA administratively detained dietary supplement products containing “kratom” — a botanical substance from Southeast Asia that may pose a risk to public health and that has the potential for abuse when consumed.  On January 6, U.S. Marshals initiated a seizure of approximately 90,000 bottles of kratom-containing supplements.  The U.S. Department of Justice filed a complaint in federal court on FDA’s behalf, alleging — among other things — that supplements containing kratom are adulterated because there is insufficient information to provide reasonable assurance that these products do not present a significant or unreasonable risk of illness or injury.

  • FDA’s use of its administrative detention authority, followed quickly thereafter by product seizure, indicates the Agency’s willingness to take swift and highly-publicized enforcement action against supplements that may pose safety risks.

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Keller and Heckman offers global food and drug services to its clients. Our comprehensive and extensive food and drug practice is one of the largest in the world. We promote, protect, and defend products made by the spectrum of industries regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the European Commission and Member States authorities in the European Union (EU) and similar authorities throughout the world. The products we help get to market include foods, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, veterinary products, dietary supplements, and cosmetics. In addition...

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