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Are coca stems, roots or seeds illegal?
Q: My question is related to Erythroxylum coca law here in the U.$. or rather the specific wording of said law...... which I can't seem to find online. So, down to the question, I know that it makes illegal the seed and leaves of the plant, but what I want find out is about the stems and roots? I'm just debating the specifics of the law over at my favorite spirit plants forum and the question has come up.

Dr. Yummm

A: The specific wording of the law placing Erythroxylum coca in schedule II is as follows:

"Coca leaves (9040) and any salt, compound, derivative or preparation of coca leaves (including cocaine (9041) and ecgonine (9180) and their salts, isomers, derivatives and salts of isomers and derivatives), and any salt, compound, derivative, or preparation thereof which is chemically equivalent or identical with any of these substances, except that the substances shall not include decocainized coca leaves or extraction of coca leaves, which extractions do not contain cocaine or ecgonine."

You can find the full text at:

This wording is pretty specific compared to many of the entries for plants. What it seems to say is that what's illegal are specifically the leaves of the coca plant, not the entire plant. It also lists the salts and isomers contained in the leaves (specifically cocaine and ecgonine) well as any preparation which contains those same substances that are contained in coca leaves.

It is within the realm of possibility that seeds, stems and roots could be declared a "preparation" (seeds appear to be of the same status as stems and roots in this regard). But that's a bit of stretch. If they WERE a preparation, they would still have to contain cocaine or ecgonine in order to be illegal.

So the question comes down to: Do coca leaves, stems or seeds contain cocaine or ecgonine?
We've been unable to find an answer to this question. We'll keep looking for the info and put any further information we find here.



Asked By : Dr. Yummm
Answered By : fire
Published Date : 10 / 18 / 2002
Last Edited Date : 3 / 12 / 2004
Question ID : 3000

Categories: [ Coca ] [ Law ] [ Plants ]

Ask Erowid v1.7 - Jul, 2005

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