Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The War on Kava, Part 2

There has been much concern, gossip, and despair in the Kava world as of late. Some of our favorite Kavas have suddenly become unavailable, and when many of us thought we were several clicks away from a fresh bag of Solomon Kava we found, to our dismay, that it was no longer available. Rumors have swirled around about an impending shut down of Kava and Kava vendors in crisis.

So I've put on my journalist hat and done some investigating, and what I've found is not too reassuring.

Sources (who I will give the pseudonym of "Philip") have informed me of seized containers of Kava that are (as of right now) frozen in ports under the order of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Apparently, this is not unusual in and of itself, but the length of time which those containers have been seized is unusual. Kava shipped by air from two different countries has been seized and held in a storage facility awaiting inspection, and has essentially been left to sit at these facilities at the cost of the Kava vendor. In other words, the longer that Kava is sitting there the lower the profit margins for the vendor. Philip told me that this is just another way for the FDA to attack Kava. Rather than making Kava illegal, they are trying to make it unprofitable.

It seems that some of those "anti-energy" drinks are part of the problem. We have even discussed them here - Take 2 For Sleep, Mary Jane's Relaxing Soda, etc. - and all of them contain Kava extract. Kava in concoctions other than Kava root powder or instant Kava has been known to be harmful and were the reason for Kava's initial ban in Europe. Philip explained to me that the FDA has Kava vendors sign an agreement that they will not create such concoctions from their imported Kava or sell Kava to companies that do make such concoctions. The fact that these kinds of concoctions are flooding the market has upped the FDAs game. Because of this renewed effort to control sources of Kava, normal everyday Kava has become targeted.

So as those containers of Kava sit at a port in Los Angeles, Philip is given no indication of whether his Kava is going to get cleared or not, and racks up expenses for the contained Kava. Left with two choices, Philip must decide between a) gambling that the Kava will get cleared and continue to pay a daily fee to the airline or b) refuse the Kava and send it back to the country it was grown in.

To quote Philip: "the FDA is very powerful and they don't have to ban something per se to stop the importation of it. All they have to do is discourage businesspeople from wanting to import it and the same effect occurs."

Not a good sign at all. 

20 comments:

  1. Oh, this is not good. My kava was investigated by Homeland Security, but I guess they figured a single 1K bag wasn't enough to prove intent to distribute. I'd like to believe the FDA is only trying to keep people safe, but I know they are the governmental arm of Big Pharma.

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  2. This is terrible.

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  3. I say this in jest, but perhaps the Hawaiian kava growers are trying to make it harder to sell imported kavas? Assuming kava from Hawaii doesn't have to go through inspection.

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  4. this ain't right, but it comes as no surprise. The FDA/PHARMA/MEDICAL SYSTEM complex is more concerned about profiting off a sick population than getting us healthy. Mainstream "health care" is so Orwellian.

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  5. I'm not an expert, but my guess is that Hawaiian kava only needs to go through Dept. of Agriculture inspections (to see if there is anything hitchhiking along not welcomed on the mainland). I doubt the Hawaiian kava growers have enough lobbying power (or $$) to get the FDA to shutdown imported kava.

    The FDA is another matter. Under the Obama Administration, this agency has been nothing short of tyrannical in its unconstitutional imposition of its will. They'll approve toxic pharmaceuticals while shutting down herbal products. Welcome to 1984...

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  6. This is the same FDA that in 1996 allowed the drug companies to unleash one of the most damaging drug to mankind: Oxycontin. The same company that caves under pressure from the drug companies to approve drugs that are loaded with side-effects.

    The FDA has always been run by/answer to "the God Ole Boys", the biggest drug dealers in America: the drug companies. Anything or any product that threatens profits from their dangerously flawed drugs, become targets. This has been going on forever.

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  7. Years ago, a suppliment, L-Tryptophan, was becoming pretty popular for releiving anxiety. Without much warning it was abruptly pulled off the market for causing death due to blood disease.

    It was determined that the problem was due to genetically engineered bacteria from one manufacturer. When the contamination was isoleted and fixed, the FDA still deemed L-Tryptophan unsafe. Yet benzodiazepines (xanax, ativan) with side effects such as Grand mal seizures, addiction, hallucinations and death, are still on the market.

    It seems like Kava has been a target once with the liver scare, I really hope this doesn't happen again.

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  8. Since when is the FDA concerned about our Health? How long have Tobacco and Alcohol been flooding into this country? This is bullshit.

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  9. It would be great if a major university conducted a medical study regarding the effects of kava on the liver. This would conclusively prove/disprove any of the health concerns (the health benefits have been studied and proven). Unfortunately, university medical programs are funded in part by drug companies and other special interests which would lose money if kava were eventually incorporated into mainstream medicine for the treatment of anxiety and stress-related ailments.

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  10. Alcohol is shit, but apparently kava is the devil.


    This is all so ridiculous, it's like MJ being on the same level as heroine.

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  11. I have a question on how you make your kava. I have seen many different recipes, but I was wondering what your kava to water ratio is for something like a stone kava. Thank you!

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  12. I have a question as well but I can also answer the above question ^

    I saw stone kava on this site and bought it a few weeks back, I use about 2 to 4 tbs of Stone kava powder per cup of room temperature water.

    my question is, I really like the effects of kava but drinking it can be a little overwhelming. Are kava pastes like thouse found on konakava safe? they are extracted with C02 and ethanol. 90% lateral root 10% underground root.

    thanks! great site ^_^

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  13. kava paste is too expensive for what you get. only get it if your curiosity _must_ be satisfied and you're willing to be out $25+

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  14. thanks for the reply i swift,

    What product is good that is also less expensive. Right now I have Stone Kava and I love the effects but the taste is too much for me to handle.

    I find it extremely helpful for staying cool calm and collected when I have a lot of school work. How to you folks drink it so often? I've tried some 10-15% Kavalactone powder capsule but without much effect even when taking upwards of 5. Are Stronger liquid gels safe? I know Kava lateral root is safe but I don't understand if C02 Kava extracts are safe.

    any advice/info would be greatly appreciated

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  15. Not sure if the taste is much better than regular kava, but I love the effects/convenience of Nakamal@Home's instant kava (both reviewed on this site). I find the Shaman a good replacement for Stone when I'm short on time.

    You can always mix it with a (non-alcoholic) drink like juice or milk. Just be sure to blend it in a warm liquid to dissolve it. I'm not a big fan of Kona Kava, but they do make some decent instant flavored kavas. Less effective and doesn't mix as well, but already flavored (prefer chocolate).

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  16. This is ridiculous about the Kava being held up in customs. The FDA should have better things to do. Since I started drinking Kava 4-5 nights a week, I no longer desire alcohol. Kava has also helped me to take less Xanax.

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  17. Kava has been around for 3,000 years. The Pope (as in THE POPE) drank kava when visiting the Pacific Islands. It's ridiculous that our government has so little respect for the people of this country that they abuse their authority to interfere in the completely legal trade of a legal product. Since when is the FDA the Legislative branch of government?

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  18. The reason the FDA and the DEA is full of such crap is because of all those punks online that call kava a "Legal high" and then buzz starts swirling around about it being a "narcotic" and a substitute to cannabis and alchohol. when people start saying this it gets the gov all up in arms and then they end up making it illegal like everything else. to me kava is just like drinking a glass or 2 of wine, it is not a narcotic or a substitute to cannabis. if people would stop starting all this internet buzz about how kava is so strong them maybe the american people would actually be able to keep something for themselves instead of having the gov take it away from them!

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  19. away from a fresh bag of Solomon Kava we found, to our dismay, that it was no longer available. Rumors have swirled around about an impending shut down of Kava and Kava vendors in crisis. I sell Kava Kava Extract (Kavalacetons)

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