News, Politics, Research

Why Are States Moving to Ban Delta 8 THC Products?

May 19, 2021 03:30 pm ET
Why Are States Moving to Ban Delta 8 THC Products?

Many states across the United States have chosen to legalize cannabis for either medical or both medical and retail consumption. In these states, there are various regulations regarding what is allowed and what is not. However, in most cases, this involves the strength of products and the content of various cannabinoids such as CBD and THC. However, in recent weeks and months, there has been another cannabinoid entering the scene, making waves for many reasons. This cannabinoid is Delta 8 THC, and the questions people have regarding it are abundant. In this article, we will look at what Delta 8 THC is, what it does, how it differs from Delta 9 THC, its legality, and why states are instituting a ban on it.

What is Delta 8 THC?

Delta 8 THC, or Delta 8 for short, is a form of tetrahydrocannabinol produced by cannabis and hemp plants. However, this phytocannabinoid isn’t produced the same as Delta 9 THC or CBD, for example. Delta 8 THC occurs in very small amounts within cannabis and hemp plants. The minute concentration of this cannabinoid when found in the plant is the result of Delta 9 THC degradation. Many of the Delta 8 products available on the market today are made by utilizing CBD isolate that is synthesized into Delta 8.

How is Delta 8 Different from Delta 9 THC?

Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC differ in chemical makeup by one aspect. Both Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC bind to the body’s endocannabinoid system and are characterized by a double bond within their structures. This double bond is believed to be the reason why the THC cannabinoid line produces intoxicating effects. While both THC 8 and THC 9 have a chain of carbon atoms, Delta 8 is characterized by a double bond on the 8th carbon atom hence the name Delta 8 THC. Delta 9 THC has the same double bond; however, it occurs on the 9th atom. The difference in the locality of the bond causes Delta 8 to act slightly differently than Delta 9 due to how and where it binds to the endocannabinoid system.

According to Dr. Peter Grinspoon, a PCP at Harvard Medical School and a board member of the Doctors For Cannabis Regulation Advocacy Group Delta 8 has vast potential in the medical field.  He estimates that Delta 8 THC is approximately 2/3 as potent as a Delta 9. According to many consumer reviews, Delta 8 is considered to be less intoxicating and offers more energetic effects than Delta 9.

Is Delta 8 THC Legal?

So is Delta 8 THC legal? This is a very tricky question. According to the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp can be legally utilized for extractions, primarily for CBD across the United States. When the CBD is processed and turned into Delta 8, many consider it to still be legal even in places where THC is not, seeing how it was derived from hemp and from CBD. Other places, however, that have legalized cannabis programs for both medical patients and retail consumers have actually placed bans on Delta 8 products.

While it is commonly agreed that the 2018 farm Bill specifically legalized hemp and hemp products making any product derived from those hemp products legal, some states have started to enact their own bans due to the gray area between naturally derived products and those that have been synthesized or made through isomerization. Like many of the Delta 8 THC products available on the market today.

What States are Banning Delta 8 THC Products and Why?

Many people believe that as long as Delta 8 is derived from CBD that is derived from hemp, it is legal, and this is a great assumption. However, CBD derived from hemp offers no intoxicating effects. When CBD is synthesized into Delta 8, it produces psychoactive and intoxicating effects, which has led several states to enact their own laws regarding Delta 8 THC, some of which have broad access to cannabis and others that do not. At the time of publication, there were 12 states, as listed below, that had banned Delta 8 THC products.

  1. Alaska
  2. Arizona
  3. Arkansas
  4. Colorado
  5. Delaware
  6. Idaho
  7. Iowa
  8. Mississippi
  9. Montana
  10. New York
  11. Rhode Island
  12. Utah
  13. Vermont

What Does Research Say about Delta 8 THC?

So other than the obvious legal loopholes in states without access to high THC products, why would manufacturers produce produces from Delta 8 when Delta 9 THC can be extracted in large concentrations from the cannabis plant species? The answer is simple, the difference is in the effects. Here is some of what the research we have thus far is saying about Delta 8 THC products.

In a study published on Science Direct, the following was concluded regarding Delta 8 THC.

“In very low concentrations, it [Delta-8-THC] increased food consumption, more than [Delta-9]THC, whereas performance and activity of the animals were similar.”

Researchers have also found that Delta 8 THC is able to offer pain-relieving, anxiety-reducing, and appetite-increasing properties. While Delta 9 THC has also been found to offer all of the same benefits, it tends to be much more intoxicating than Delta 8 THC and unfortunately, not everyone has access to Delta 9 THC products. In these places, consumers are turning to Delta 8 products that often sit right alongside CBD products in gas stations and headshops. However, that might not be the case much longer.

Have you utilized a Delta 8 product? What was your experience? We would love to hear from you in the comments below!

Post Your Comments

Joshua S. says:

May 22, 2021 at 9:17 am

I am a full time care giver for the disabled. I am a medical patient and an activist on the legalization of marijuana. When I speak of marijuana and the difference between Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC I speak from a medical standpoint. I personally believe in marijuana and all of its properties. From the seed to the product everything about the marijuana plant is beautiful. The way the plant is used to help heal the planet one person at a time. Pain from mental or physical complications can make life very difficult but whether you use Delta 8 or Delta 9 THC you will find the right treatment for you.

Reply
Brian says:

May 25, 2021 at 10:16 pm

Thank you Joshua…very informative…much appreciated…good job

Reply
David Peck says:

May 22, 2021 at 12:52 pm

Delta is cannabis light – I read all the hype and the reviews so I wanted to try it for myself. I ordered Effex premium flower. Now at $40 a quarter sounds like a steal. I chose bubba kush OG an indica. Rolled 2.5 grams in a tobacco and nicotine free hemp wrap. It was a beast. I smoked the whole thing and it was as if I smoked small amount of mid grade. Meh 😒
States banning it in my opinion is ridiculous. Probably more about regulation and $$$.
I tried a sativa delta 8 cartridge and that was more disappointing then the flower. Just made me hack a lung and get a headache. So $20 for the cart and $40 for the flowers- a waste of $60

Reply
Jon Reed says:

May 22, 2021 at 10:31 pm

I first tried hemp derived delta 8 THC distillate in March of 2020. First heard about it through Reddit. Legalized through a loophole in the farm bill. The farm bill legalized cannabis completely. Only caveat the dry flower has to be below .3% THC. This didn’t include any other cannabinoid including THCA. I’ve purchased multiple strains of hemp flower that have contained over 5% total THC that were legal through farm bill. Found Delta 8 distillate the same way. It’s a simply acid reaction then solvent wash process to turn CBD isolate into delta 8, delta 9, THCV and many other cannabinoids.

Delta 8 is about 1/3 the potency of delta 9 THC. It’s great for people just getting into consuming THC because it has a far less propensity for inducing THC anxiety attacks. Which are becoming more and more common with the increasing popularity of stronger forms of cannabis. You can right now buy an Oz of 95% pure delta 8 distillate for less than 100 bucks. It’s ridiculously cheap when compared to any other legal, grey or illegal delta 9THC product. It’s getting banned because the cannabis industry doesn’t want that cutting into their profits and the government is banning it because they think it’s spice 2.0 and want to cover their ass. Give delta 8 a try from a reputable site. Find reputable sites through r/delta8 on Reddit.

Reply
John says:

May 24, 2021 at 9:19 am

I’ve tried delta 8 if you have a low tolerance it will give you a buzz. A light buzz but nice

Reply
Mary Gerdt says:

July 1, 2021 at 5:04 am

First, Thank You, Veriheal, for helping me obtain my Medical Cannabis Card in Virginia. I have Multiple Sclerosis among other Medical problems, Severe pain at times, spasms, insomnia, depression. for 2 years I have had no legal access to Medical Cannabis. Looking for answers, I visited a Head shop and the guy talked to me about Delta 8.
I bought some and tried it. Such a subtle high. Not dramatic. My nerves all felt calmer. Slept better.

Reply
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