If you’re reading this you probably already know about Delta-8 THC and may be curious to know more. After reading some blogs, and hearing about it on the news, you’re probably wondering how Delta-8 is legal. The answer is simple: because it’s not Marijuana! However, here are some other reasons why Delta-8 THC is legal.
What Are Cannabinoids?
A cannabinoid is any of the more than one hundred recognized substances derived from Hemp. Some cannabinoids are stronger than others, and some have no psychoactive effects (can’t get you high). The two most important are Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Each cannabinoid comes with different benefits that scientists are still researching. It’s the part that gets you high that can determine their legality. Specifically, Delta-9 THC is what most people associate with getting high.
The Cannabis sativa L. plant must have less than 0.03% of Delta-9 THC in order to be considered Hemp. Any Cannabis sativa L. plant that has more than 0.03% Delta-9 THC is considered to be Marijuana and a Schedule I drug.
The most famous Hemp-derived cannabinoid is CBD. It first became famous because it’s non-psychoactive (i.e. can’t get you high). All legal CBD is derived strictly from Hemp and not Marijuana.
One cannabinoid that has stirred the pot is Delta-8 THC. Although Delta-8 THC is a form of THC, it is derived from Hemp. The difference between Delta-8 THC and Delta-9 THC is the different positioning of one bond in its chemical composition. This small difference produces a less intense high. It also makes it technically legal, since there is no specific ban on the chemical by law.
Related Post: Going Beyond Delta-8: Exploring Popular Cannabinoids
Public Reception of Delta-8 THC
Since Delta-8 hit the market it established the reputation of being less strong than Delta-9 THC. This stands to reason since Delta-8’s chemical difference from Delta-9 makes it less intense on the mind. Users say the ‘buzz’ is smoother and more relaxing.
Some customers also report feeling less of the anxiety and paranoia sometimes associated with Marijuana. That pleasing experience, combined with a legal high makes Delta-8 THC the answer to some states where Marijuana is illegal. Delta-8 has gone from a novelty in a few shops to a best-seller nationwide.
Some see it as a natural bridge between CBD and Marijuana. A strong handful of reputable sellers currently offer Delta-8 products. You can find Delta-8 THC in Edible form, Vape Cartridges, Delta-8 Tinctures, and more.
The Law On Delta-8 THC
Despite the positive reactions, the Delta-8 THC craze may be getting ahead of itself. While it’s technically legal, the emphasis is on the word “technical.” Federal law made growing hemp legal in 2018. By definition, Hemp had to adhere to the 0.03% Delta-9 THC limit. All products derived from that Hemp must also have no more than 0.03% Delta-9 THC. Delta-8 THC isn’t mentioned in the law itself, and until recently was not under scrutiny.
Most CBD from growers meet the legal THC requirements. The extracted Delta-8 THC is also free of Delta-9 THC contaminants. The problem arises in the way Delta-8 is manufactured in bulk. Direct extraction from hemp produces only a minimal amount of Delta-8 THC. The common practice is to manipulate CBD and produce Delta-8 THC quantities from that process.
State Laws on Delta-8 THC
Some State lawmakers are moving towards banning Delta-8 THC. Although Delta-8 is still covered under the Farm Bill, some states just don’t want to deal with it. Most of these states have strict laws when it comes to CBD as it stands. When state lawmakers find out that Delta-8 THC has the ability to get a person high, they tend to freak out.
The reason that most states are moving towards banning Delta 8 is because there are a lot of things not yet known about it. Daniele Piomelli, director of the University of California, Irvine, Center for the Study of Cannabis stated, “We don’t know enough to be worried yet, but better to be safe than sorry.” Lawmakers are following suit and taking preventative measures just in case there are long-term side effects.
How Safe Is It To Use Delta-8 THC?
There isn’t much reliable research on the use of Delta-8 THC. There’s no question that this Cannabinoid is less potent than Delta-9 THC. Less potency usually means less risk; However, that can be circumvented by increasing the dosages. The greatest chance of harm doesn’t seem to come from Delta-8 THC itself. It is the unregulated market that poses the greatest danger.
Random tests have shown wild variances of THC concentrations in some Delta-8 THC products. Several off-the-shelf offerings have Delta-9 THC in them, while certain other products even contain toxic chemicals. There is a growing call for firm regulation and oversight. Some of the loudest voices for these legal changes come from CBD retailers and manufacturers themselves. They see an unregulated supply chain as a threat to their customers. They believe their profits will increase by bringing safety and certainty to a higher level for Delta-8 THC sales.
Delta-8 THC legality in your state can change from one day to the next. Although the public loves Delta-8 THC, this makes lawmakers nervous since not a lot is known about this cannabinoid. On its surface, Delta-8 is safe to use assuming you’re buying from a reputable company. The only thing we can do at this point is to wait and see how the laws change and continue to enjoy Delta-8.