Arguments over how to regulate Delta-8 THC stand in the way of reform across the cannabis industry Illinois (And it’s not the only condition). Hemp-derived cannabinoids could make THC available in states where cannabis is illegal, but unfortunately the debate over Delta 8 is making general adult-use legalization more complicated and harder to pass. has become
Most recently, Illinois rejected a cannabis industry reform bill before the May legislative deadline. The backlash was due to stakeholders failing to find common ground during the final day of the spring session. If passed, canopy space will be expanded for craft growers, pharmacies will be able to operate drive-thru windows and offer curbside pickup, and real estate will be available to social justice retail license holders. You will be given another year to secure it. But then a proposal was added to regulate Delta-8 THC. The battle over whether to ban Delta-8 or regulate it like cannabis has stalled other broad reform efforts.
As a result, the entire bill has been postponed until the fall legislature, said Illinois Rep. LaShawn Ford, the bill’s sponsor. Said Capitol News Illinois. Ford opposes adding a delta 8 THC ban to the bill pending further insight from state regulators and industry insiders. “We need to regulate it, make it safe, tax it, treat it like cannabis,” Ford said.
Delta-8 THC is derived from natural cannabinoids found in hemp. It is psychoactive and has similar effects to the more famous Delta-9. Both are isomers of THC, but one has a double bond at the 8th carbon chain and the other has the same double bond at the 9th carbon chain, hence the name of the cannabinoid Delta-8 THC. and Delta-9 THC. Everyone reacts differently, but delta 8 is more potent than the brain effects of delta 9, the THC we all know (well, not everyone knows) and love. It is generally understood to bring about a calmer, more physical uplift.
Cannabis is still illegal at the federal level, but $867 billion Farm Improvement Act of 2018 (better known as the Farm Bill) was passed, making hemp production completely legal nationwide. A grower is allowed to produce a plant if it contains less than 0.3% THC in its chemical composition. Because humans find ways to get high all the time, hemp manufacturers have started making and marketing psychoactive delta-8 products. In addition to providing psychotropics to residents of illegal states, Delta-8 is suing the federal government for the absurdity of its laws. Regulating or outlawing plants based on chemical levels is nonsense and doesn’t work. Nature will find a way.
While it’s great that Delta 8 gives people access to some form of psychoactive cannabis, many may want to switch to Delta 9. First, extracting a delta 8 is much more labor intensive than a regular delta 9 (which can have a negative impact on the environment).
The Delta-8 is also expensive to produce, but aside from manufacturing concerns, the Delta-9 is stronger. There are many medical patients and recreational users who simply prefer the more powerful and psychedelic effects of Delta 9. It’s a shame that the Farm Bill, full of hopes that it will eventually legalize cannabis, is getting in the way of adult use. And access to Delta-9.
Delta 8 regulations vary across the United States. At least 14 states have outright banned Delta-8 THC products, and that number could rise next year. For example, in early 2023, the Colorado legislature introduced a bipartisan bill regulating the intoxicating hemp-derived cannabinoid, also known as Delta-8. Conversely, Minnesota, which recently became the 23rd state to legalize adult-use cannabis, offers producers licenses for cannabis and hemp-derived products. In a perfect world for stoners, both hemp and cannabis products would be affordable, easy and fair to obtain without fear of federal authorities. But until then, I will continue to report on the unfolding patchwork of cannabis legalization in the United States.