Is Delta Eight THC Authorized In Your State?


If you’ve read up on the latest cannabis trends, it’s very likely that Delta 8 THC has entered your consciousness.

This cannabinoid is growing in popularity as more people find ways to include it in their routine. Even so, there are many people, including die-hard CBD lovers, who are unsure of what it is or whether or not it is legal at all.

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What is Delta 8 THC?

Before we dive into Delta 8, let’s take a quick look at the better known Delta 9 THC, the type of tetrahydrocannabinol most commonly associated with cannabis. THC is the cannabinoid with psychoactive properties and therefore the most controversial of the plant substances.

Delta 9 THC is derived from THCA – or tetrahydrocannabinolic acid – which is found in raw plants before the application of heat and loses its carboxylic acid group or CO2 molecule, creating the chemical formulation (C21H30O2) and then turning into Delta 9 THC. This process is known as decarboxylation.

From this point on, a small percentage of Delta 9 oxidizes to Delta 8 THC – a Delta 9 analogue that is only present in traces in the finished / cured flower. This is because Delta 8 is just a slightly modified version of Delta 9. In particular, Delta 8 has a double bond on the 8th carbon atom, while Delta 9 has this on the 9th.

Similar to other cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD), cannabichromene (CBC), and cannabinol (CBN), which are found in small amounts in the cannabis plant, delta-8-THC must be isolated and extracted to produce concentrations beyond smoking could or vaping. When it comes to the medicinal benefits of Delta 8 THC, a few are of particular interest.

Why is it important?

Numerous studies from the 1970s, most of which were from Israel and conducted by Professor Raphael Mechoulam and his staff, found that Delta 8 was linked to a number of different health benefits. As with other cannabinoids, it stimulates the endocannabinoid system and can be used in very different ways.

Delta-8 is already linked to a number of health benefits. The National Center for Biological Information (NCBI) describes Delta-8-THC as follows: “An analogue of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) with antiemetic, anxiolytic, appetite-stimulating, analgesic and neuroprotective properties.” It goes on to say: “This remedy has a lower psychotropic Effectiveness on as delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta-9-THC), the primary form of THC in cannabis. “

Most notably, this cannabinoid’s ability to fight cancer and treat related side effects. This was first observed in a 1974 study that found that Delta-9 was able to slow tumor growth after a few days, while Delta-8 when combined with CBN actually caused tumors to shrink after 20 days. Another 1995 study in children with leukemia showed high efficacy in treating cancer while controlling nausea and vomiting caused by other therapies.

What remains unknown on a scientific level anyway is exactly how the psychoactive effects of Delta 8 THC compare to those of Delta 9. Another study from the 1970s found that Delta 8 had 2/3 of the psychoactive effects of Delta 9, which is significant but still sufficient for a user to experience some noticeable effects.

Federal laws on Delta 8 THC

Recently, there has been some controversy over whether Delta 8 should be added to the DEA’s Controlled Substances List, and many in the industry felt that it would be banned after the interim decision on “synthetically derived” cannabinoids. This turned out not to be the case.

Although some changes have been made, the end result is this: If the final Delta 8 product is made from hemp and contains less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC, it is likely legal. The DEA added Delta 8 THC to their List of Controlled Substances, which was only updated in August 2020. However, since the 2018 Farm Bill specifically excludes “tetrahydrocannabinols in hemp,” it means that any form of THC derived from hemp that already falls within the limits set remain legal.

State legality

Yes, Delta 8 THC is legal nationwide. However, states can override federal laws if they so choose. It happens all the time with industries like alcohol, tobacco, and gambling. While Delta 8 may be legal nationwide, that doesn’t mean it’s legal in all 50 states.

What’s also interesting is that the laws surrounding Delta 8 aren’t based on whether recreational cannabis is legal or not. Quite a few states with legal cannabis, including Arizona and Colorado, have banned the manufacture, sale, and possession of Delta 8 THC.

Alabama: LegalAlaska: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of AlaskaArizona: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of ArizonaArkansas: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of ArkansasCalifornia: LegalColorado: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of ColoradoConnecticut: LegalDelaware: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of DelawareFlorida: LegalGeorgia: LegalHawaii: LegalIdaho: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of IdahoIllinois: LegalIndiana: LegalIowa: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of IowaKansas: LegalKentucky: LegalLouisiana: LegalMaine: LegalMaryland: LegalMassachusetts: LegalMichigan: LegalMinnesota: LegalMississippi: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of MississippiMissouri: LegalMontana: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of MontanaNebraska: LegalNevada: LegalNew Hampshire: LegalNew Jersey: LegalNew Mexico: LegalNew York: LegalNorth Carolina: LegalNorth Dakota: LegalOhio: LegalOklahoma: LegalOregon: LegalPennsylvania: LegalRhode Island: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of Rhode Island South Carolina: Legal South Dakota: LegalTennessee: LegalTexas: LegalUtah: Delta 8 is illegal in the state of UtahVermont: LegalVirginia: LegalWashington: LegalWest Virginia: LegalWisconsin: LegalWyoming: Legal

Final thoughts

In summary, Delta 8 is illegal in 11 states: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Montana, Rhode Island, and Utah. This is legal in all other states. Note, however, that this may change if the legislature determines that it should be classified as a controlled substance. Therefore, you should always refer to state laws before taking Delta 8, as the laws regarding cannabis are prone to sudden changes.

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Beth Edmonds