Since 2018 and the legalization of hemp and all products derived from hemp, the CBD market has exploded in just about every state regardless of cannabis prohibition. In fact, many prohibition states have followed suit and updated their state laws to reflect the legality of hemp which is cannabis with a THC limit of no more than 0.3%. While the reprieve has been a godsend for some, those who want to use the safe and effective cannabis plant in prohibition states have found an alternative until the tides change in their state.
What is Delta-8
In comes delta-8 THC, this compound is very similar to the compound delta-9 THC which is the “main ingredient” if you will when it comes to getting high with cannabis. Since the 2018 Farm Bill legalized all products derived from hemp, this meant some clever growers could grow high-yielding delta-8 hemp, then chemically concrete the isomer and sell it as a legal alternative to delta-9. For many this is a great balance between CBD and delta-9, it lies in the middle in terms of potency and psychoactive properties. Many users report delta-8 highs to feel very similar to delta-9 highs except without as much paranoia or anxiety (which some users report with delta-9).
Ramifications of Delta-8
Although delta-8 does not violate the letter of the law (2018 Farm Bill), some still say delta-8 is violating the spirit of the law. Some lawyers and even industry sellers say that the Farm Bill meant to legalize hemp and CBD, but not necessarily isomers like delta-8 which must be produced in a lab. Others in the industry (as well as lawyers) however say that delta-8 and any other derivatives of hemp are legal since they don’t come from cannabis. Either way, the debate over the place delta-8 has in the industry is wild and hotter than ever.
What does the industry think?
While lawyers, politicians, and industry leaders argue about the legality of delta-8 one thing is for certain. Consumers love delta-8, some stores in states where the compound is not yet illegal note they now make 80% of their revenue from delta-8 sales alone. In some cases, shops and stores are reportedly making millions of dollars in revenue every year from delta-8 because consumers love it that much. In states where delta-9 cannabis is still illegal, it seems delta-8 remains supreme.
Meanwhile, in-state where cannabis is legal, delta-8 still has its place, although not as “upfront” as prohibition states. Yet, even some progressive states like Colorado and Oregon have banned delta-8 sighting health and safety concerns. Colorado for instance claims they need more time to test whether or not any harmful compounds are produced during the creation of delta-8.
Delta-8 and the consumer
Aside from the lawyers and politicians feel about delta-8, it seems some states really haven’t learned that prohibition does not work period. While many states still have a grey area around delta-8 it may be a good time to stock up in case your state like 14 others make delta-8 illegal. The most cost-effective solution would be to buy an ounce delta 8 at a time. Buying in bulk can also help you build up some reserves in case your state or lawmakers begin to target delta-8.