Numerous questions related to the legality of Delta 8 THC were raised after the passing of farm bill 2018. While some people questioned the legalization because the bill doesn’t specify which substance has been legalized. Others started exploiting the law by selling products claiming to be pure Delta 8 THC. Above all these questions, people are confused if they can freely sell, grow and consume Delta-8 THC.
To answer all your questions once and for all related to the legality of Delta 8 THC. I have created this legal guide to help you. So, let’s get started!
What is Delta 8 THC/Tetrahydrocannabinol?
Known by names like “Marijuana lite,” “Weed lite,” and so on. Delta 8 THC is a naturally occurring substance in the hemp plant. It occurs in minimal amounts and can also be extracted through various methods. This compound has similar effects and benefits as Delta 9. It gives you relaxation, potential pain relief, uplifting moods and feelings, etc. but in a milder sense.
As per the green market report, Delta 8 THC is the fastest-growing product in the hemp sector.
Is Delta 8 THC Legal in Alabama?
Delta 8 THC was legalized in Alabama after the farm bill 2018 (Agricultural improvement act). This bill federally legalized hemp-derived CBD and was removed from schedule 1 of the controlled substances act. Soon after the bill’s passing, on May 30th, 2019, Alabama amended code 2-8-31 to include all hemp-derived derivates, isomers, and cannabinoids except 9 THC. The definition of hemp was amended and changed to:
“Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds thereof and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers, cultivated or possessed by a licensed grower 9; otherwise following the state’s USDA-approved regulatory plan, whether growing or not, with a delta 9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”
Delta 8 THC was never specifically mentioned during the passage of the Farm Bill, and it has been assumed to be legal after hemp was legalized within the specified quantity.
It’s pertinent to note here that Delta 8 THC is produced in a minimal percentage and hemp has a high quantity of CBD, which can be turned into Delta 8 through isomerization. This is out of the scope of federal as well as state law. While the authorities are silent on “manufacturing and conversion” CBD into Delta 8 THC. USDA released hemp final rule stating that the “farm bill does not impact the control status of synthetically derived tetrahydrocannabinol from the list of control substances”. The Drug Enforcement Agency has also issued an interim final rule clarifying some ambiguities. It says that synthetically derived THC will remain on the list of controlled substances. However, there’s no clear definition of “synthetically derived,” it still leaves a grey area there. From which a significant advantage has been gained by Delta 8 THC sellers. Some experts also believe that synthetically derived cannabinoid is a “man-made” phenomenon that does not use hemp plants. Therefore Delta 8 Synthesizing does not fall into that category since it uses hemp-derived CBD in the process.
What is the Legal Limit of Delta 8 THC in Alabama?
Delta 8 THC derived from the hemp plant with less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC is legal in Alabama. Above this limit, it will automatically be considered marijuana, which is banned from selling and consumption in the state and federally. The punishment for selling, delivering or distributing of the same falls under Class B felony, which can attract 2-10 years of prison and a $ 30,000 fine.
Are Delta 8 THC Edibles Legal? If Yes, Where Can We Find Them?
Yes. You can find Delta 8 THC products readily available online and offline in the form of chocolates, gummies, beverages, cartridges, etc. Offline you can find them from CBD dispensers, head and tobacco shops, and also by a wide range of businesses that sell CBD and hemp. It is imperative to note that because of inadequate product labeling, identical packaging, and a lack of systematic testing methods or studies to check whether Delta 8 used in the product is naturally produced or synthetic, people have been consuming products that are not appropriate for their health. Resulting in which there have been cases of emergency and adverse reactions. We suggest you buy it only from a licensed grower. Also, if you are buying from any CBD dispensers or shop, please make sure to check the following:
- Product Labelling
- Brand Credibility
Are Delta 8 THC Products Evaluated by Anyone?
Now that this is legal, you must wonder if it’s safe to consume and what evaluation is done to ensure the products are safe for consumption. But no! Delta 8 THC products are not regulated by FDA, and that’s why it’s a bit riskier to consume any of its products. While the effect of Delta 8 THC is 50-80% similar to Delta 9 THC, it raises a concern regarding the consumption of this drug. The result is that there has been a surge of 41% in calls to poison control related to Delta 8 THC from January to July 2021.
Is it Legal to Smoke Delta 8 and Drive?
Of course NOT. It’s illegal to drive under the influence of THC or any kind of cannabis, for that matter. To clarify, people have different ways to consume THC, some as a medicine for headaches, metabolism, etc. Therefore, it will depend on the circumstances and how you consume it, determining if you pass or fail the drug test.
Is Delta 8 THC a Controlled Substance in the USA?
No, it is not a controlled substance. While there was no clarification in the farm bill related to this. Drug Enforcement Administration in Sept 2021 sent a response letter to the Alabama board of pharmacy, stating that Delta 9 THC with 0.3% will not be in control of CSA. Furthermore, THC synthetically produced through non-cannabis products will remain in control of CSA.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: How Old Do You Have to Be to Buy Delta 8 THC in Alabama?
Answer: No federal or state regulation puts any kind of restriction on the buying or consumption of this substance. However, you may find restrictions at many stores that require a minimum age of 21 to purchase it. Most smoke shops or online distributors follow the law for cigarettes and tobacco.
Question: Can You Travel to Alabama With Delta 8?
Answer: It depends. While it is legal at the federal level, it won’t be an issue in the states it’s legalized. However, check if your airline has any restrictions regarding it and the laws for the states you’ll be passing through to reach Alabama if traveling by road. Several states may have restrictions regarding it.
Question: Can You Travel to Alabama with Marijuana-derived Delta 8 THC?
Answer: No. As marijuana-derived Delta 8 THC has a high amount of Delta 9 THC, banned in Alabama. Therefore, it is illegal to possess, sell, or traffic this kind of substance in Alabama.
Question: What is the Punishment for Having Illegal Possession of Delta-9 THC?
Answer: Unlawful possession has been divided into two levels of possession. For illegal possession of marijuana other than personal use, the first level is a Class C felony. The second level is when you have possession for personal use, which is a Class D felony. The punishment for both acts can vary from 1-10 years of prison and up to a $ 15,000 fine. This can also result in confiscation of your driving license as well.
Question: Do You Need a License to Sell Hemp-derived Delta 8 THC Products in Alabama?
Answer: No. You can freely sell and distribute these products if they are produced from hemp and complies with farm bill 2018.
Question: Are There Any Possession Limits of Delta 8 THC in Alabama?
Answer: As per section 2-8-31, Industrial hemp or hemp is considered as an agricultural crop/Agricultural commodity in all respects under state law except the marijuana defined in sub-division of section 20-2-2. Thus, no possession limit has been set for the delta 8-THC.
Question: What Type of Delta 8 is Legal in Alabama?
Answer: Delta 8 derived from the compliant hemp mentioned in the farm bill 2018, within the limit of 0.3%.
Question: Is it Legal to Mail Delta 8-THC?
Answer: This will depend on the products that are being mailed. On October 21, 2021, USPS announced that cannabis and hemp vaping products would fall into the electronic nicotine delivery system. Therefore, they will not be sent through USPS while other products, such as edibles remain legal to ship.
Question: Do I Need a License to Grow Hemp in Alabama?
Answer: Yes, the U.S department of agriculture(USDA), Agriculture marketing services, has curated a plan on tribes and states that enable producers to grow hemp. To produce hemp, you need to get a license or authorization under the USDA hemp program/state hemp program/ tribal hemp program, whatever is necessary for your state.
Further, you need an industrial hemp license in Alabama issued by the department of agriculture and industry, which is responsible for licensing and inspection programs for industrial hemp production. You need to submit the Grower License Application for 2020 to the Alabama department of agriculture and industries (ADAI).
As a result of this discussion, it’s evident that there’s a dire need for regulatory structures that ban the production of products that claim to contain pure Delta 8 THC while instead containing poisonous chemicals. Delta-8 THC is not a new substance, it is just that it gained prominence after the passing of the farm bill, and researchers have been analyzing it for years. Despite that, it lacks scientific advancement that allows Authorities to know what those products contain. While it’s clear that Delta 8 THC is here to stay, this has numerous benefits and has fewer side effects. As long as this product is handled safely, there is no doubt its effectiveness. In time, it will be accepted by other states, like marijuana has been accepted by 18 states. Still, we must answer the gray area that has persisted for quite some time.