The pronunciation of the word ‘kratom’ has been a point of contention for years. A majority of kratom users claim that kratom is pronounced ‘KRAY-tum’. In fact, most shop personnel working at physical kratom stores will typically say it this way.
However, there is a growing community of users who prefer saying ‘kra-TOM’. And although that might make you feel a little pretentious, it’s actually a little closer to the way local Thai folk says the word.
In Thailand, people pronounce kratom as ‘krat-HOM.” But while this might be the proper pronunciation if we’re considering the word’s origins, there’s no denying that language tends to take on a life of its own as it travels across the globe.
The FDA is cracking down hard on kratom. Since they have yet to approve kratom for human consumption, the FDA works round the clock to control vendors who attempt to market the product as an herbal remedy.
In response to this, vendors have gotten creative. Most of them use other terms for kratom to conceal their products from the FDA’s immediate view.
These terms include:
It’s common for people to question kratom’s legality especially after learning that some vendors attempt to hide their product from the FDA. The short answer is that kratom is legal, but with some exceptions.
On a federal level, there are no restrictions that prevent people from using the herb however they deem fit. However local governments have levied various laws and regulations that attempt to control the use, sale, and possession of kratom within their jurisdiction.
The reason why vendors feel the need to hide their products behind alternate names is because of the FDA. Presently, the FDA stands firm in its decision that tags kratom as unapproved for human consumption. While that doesn’t really prevent you from using the product at home, it impacts the way that vendors can advertise.
Notice how the majority of kratom vendors tiptoe around terms and phrases that would allude to kratom being a food product or supplement. No one really makes mention of how to use kratom, and they leave that to your own understanding.
But because numerous vendors have gotten in trouble in the past for making mistakes with product advertising and labels, some hope to avoid the mess altogether by hiding their products behind entirely different names.
They go so far in fact that some vendors will completely hide their kratom lineup on their website unless you use the right code word to search their inventory.
If you’re worried about legality, make sure to read up on local laws within your area to avoid unknowingly violating any potential legal barriers.
When it comes to how to pronounce ‘kratom’, it’s all a matter of preference. Of course, you might find that it sounds silly to go against the grain by saying krat-HOM. But if you want to be authentic to Thai culture, that would be the best way to say it.
However if you’re more concerned about the raised brows you might get by saying things a little differently, then there’s nothing wrong with sticking to the Americanized KRAY-tom. Because at the end of the day, it’s all the same herb.