If you are traveling through the United States this year, you might notice that there is a new product available at smoke shops, gas stations, and alternative wellness shops – delta-8 THC. This cannabinoid has always been naturally present in trace amounts in traditional cannabis. So Baby Boomers who were cannabis enthusiasts in their youth have consumed delta 8 before. It has never been extracted and sold in its purest form, though.
This article will explain delta-8 THC, and will also give you tips for finding the best delta 8 near you or in any location to which you are traveling.
What is Delta-8 THC?
The THC we think of when we talk about THC-dominant cannabis, also known as marijuana, is actually delta-9 THC. It is the cannabinoid responsible for the psychoactive effects that can occur when was uses marijuana. This makes some people paranoid, especially in high amounts.
Back in the heyday of the Baby Boomer counterculture, the marijuana consumed during that time was much less potent than it is today. Some strains today have upwards of 20% delta-9 THC.
Delta-8 THC is still technically psychoactive, but it is said to produce more of a relaxed feeling in the body that isn’t paired with any of the mentally stimulating effects of delta-9 THC. This can make it a potentially attractive marijuana alternative for those who have retired from the strong stuff.
Delta 8 can either be extracted or synthesized. Extracting it directly from the cannabis plant can be costly since it takes a lot of biomass to produce a sellable amount of delta 8 extract. The second, and more common method of producing delta 8 is to synthesize it from pure CBD isolate. This method is more common since there is a big surplus of isolates within the market, but it is also a big reason why it is banned in some states. Some states classify it as a synthetic analog of delta-9 THC, which makes it banned under these state legislatures.
Delta 8 is typically sold in vape cartridges, but some companies are selling CBD hemp flower that have been sprayed with Delta 8 extract.
Is Delta-8 THC Legal?
If you do decide to pick up some delta 8 while you are on the road, make sure to check its legal status in all of the states along your planned travel route. These laws vary from state to state. There are currently 11 states where delta 8 is banned: Utah, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Montana, and Rhode Island. As you can see with the case of Colorado, the legal status of delta 8 has nothing to do with the legal status of cannabis. It is banned in Colorado, yet both marijuana and hemp are legal. As mentioned above, the reason for this complexity is the fact that it is synthesized and therefore not covered under the Hemp Farm Bill of 2018.
The Hemp Farm Bill made it federally legal to grow and sell hemp, which is simply cannabis that has been bred to possess less than 0.3 % delta-9 THC. You have probably seen CBD products in stores along your travels since then, as it has exploded into a billion-dollar industry. All of these products contain cannabinoids derived from hemp. The problem with delta 8 from a legal perspective is that it is synthesized from hemp-derived CBD isolate. While this is merely copying a process that occurs naturally, the law sees it as a completely separate product from hemp.
How do I Find the Best Delta 8?
If you are in or traveling to a state where delta 8 is legal, then you might want to try some to see what all the hype is about.
Those living the nomad lifestyle won’t have the option of ordering from an online vendor, but this is typically the best option.
Luckily, many stores get their products wholesale from an online vendor. Make sure you look up the manufacturer of the product online before making your in-store purchase. Read all of the customer reviews to make sure you are not getting ripped off.
If you follow that one simple tip, you will set yourself up for a positive delta 8 experience.
Before you go, remember that delta-8 THC may have psychoactive effects. Use under your own discretion, and do not drive or operate heavy machinery after consuming.
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