Is Delta-8 Legal in Washington?

Is Delta-8 Legal in Washington?

With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp and products derived from it have been granted nationwide legal status, but only if they contain no more than 0.3% THC. However, each state still had the right to establish its own regulations. The Washington State Liquor Control Board recently issued a statement banning the sale, production, and purchase of chemically synthesized Delta 8 THC. Therefore, since Delta 8 is typically synthesized from CBD, Delta 8 products are banned in the state.

Why is Delta-8 in Washington

Delta 8 THC was banned by Washington State LCB (Liquor and Cannabis Board) due to concerns over the purity of products containing the compound. The LCB expressed concerns that extracts, derivatives, isomers, cannabinoids, and CBD isolates from hemp or other sources were chemically or genetically altered, resulting in potentially psychoactive or intoxicating compounds entering the licensed cannabis system in the state. The LCB expressed uneasiness about the health implications related to the use of such products. With no mandatory testing standards for such products and no potency or concentration limits established by state law, the LCB issued a policy statement leading to the ban of Delta 8 products.

Delta 8 Laws in Washington

  • 2018: The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 was signed into law by the federal government in December. This legislation not only legalizes the production, cultivation, and use of hemp and its derivatives, such as Delta 8 THC but also establishes a framework for regulating these activities in all 50 states. The law also permitted states to enact their own policies or regulations per the cultivation and sale of hemp and hemp derivatives
  • 2019: After the federal government passed the 2018 Farm Bill, several states in the US, including Washington, followed suit by enacting their own legislation to legalize hemp and hemp-derived compounds. Washington's Senate Bill 5276 was passed in April 2019, permitting the sale of hemp-derived Delta 8 products as long as they do not contain more than 0.3% Delta 9 THC
  • 2021: According to the policy statement released by the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB), chemically synthesized Delta 8 is classified as a Schedule I controlled substance under the Uniform Controlled Substances Act in Washington. This means it is illegal to manufacture, distribute, purchase, or sell any products containing Delta 8 that have been chemically converted from isolated CBD. As almost all Delta 8 products on the market are derived from extracted CBD and have been chemically synthesized, this announcement effectively bans all Delta 8 products in Washington

What Is Delta-8 THC?

Delta 8 THC (Δ-8-tetrahydrocannabinol) is a naturally occurring psychoactive compound found in cannabis plants. It is chemically similar to Delta 9 THC, the primary psychoactive component in cannabis, but has a slightly different molecular structure. Delta 8 THC is typically found in trace amounts in the cannabis plant, but it can be extracted and concentrated for use in various products.

Delta 8 THC is often created through chemical conversion from other cannabinoids, such as CBD. This has led to the development of products specifically marketed as containing Delta 8 THC, such as edibles, tinctures, and vape cartridges.

As per its benefits, Delta 8 THC has been found to have anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. Delta 8 THC may also help reduce anxiety and pain, stimulate appetite, and improve mood. However, these potential benefits still need to be fully understood, and more research is required in order to confirm them.

Despite its potential benefits, Delta 8 THC can also cause some side effects. These side effects include dry mouth, red eyes, impaired motor coordination, and euphoria.

Delta-8 vs. Delta-9

Delta 8 and Delta 9 are two THC isomers found in cannabis plants. Although they share similar names, they differ in chemical structure, potency, and potential effects on users. The following are key differences and similarities between both Delta THC isomers:

  • Abundance and Potency: Delta 9 THC is the most abundant type of THC in cannabis plants and is generally considered more potent than Delta 8 THC. Delta 8 THC is typically found in lower concentrations in cannabis plants compared to Delta 9 THC
  • Extraction and Synthesis: Since Delta 8 occurs naturally in very small amounts in cannabis plants, it is usually synthesized from CBD through a chemical process. Delta 9 THC is more abundant in cannabis plants and can be extracted using various methods, including solvent extraction
  • Effects: Both Delta 8 and Delta 9 THC can produce similar psychoactive effects, including feelings of euphoria, relaxation, and altered perception. However, the psychoactive impacts of Delta 9 are much stronger and last longer than Delta 8. Also, some users report Delta 8 THC producing a more relaxed and clear-headed impact compared to the intense psychoactive effects of Delta 9 THC
  • Benefits: Both compounds have therapeutic benefits, including uses in appetite stimulation, pain relief, and nausea relief

Delta-8 vs. Delta-10

Delta 8 and Delta 10 are two of the many analogs of Delta 9 THC. Delta 8 is an isomer of Delta 9, meaning that they have similar molecular formulae but different arrangements of atoms.

Regarding potency, Delta 9 is generally considered the most potent form of THC, followed by Delta 8 and Delta 10. Delta 8 and Delta 10 affect users differently. Delta 10 has been reported to have a more energizing effect, while Delta 8 has a more relaxing effect. However, there is limited research on Delta 10, and more studies are needed to understand its potency and effects fully.

Delta 8 THC and Delta 10 THC are found in small amounts in cannabis plants, and they can be synthesized from CBD or Delta 9 THC using chemical reactions. For example, Delta 8 can be synthesized by oxidizing CBD or Delta 9 THC, while Delta 10 can be synthesized by adding a double bond to Delta 9 THC.

How Long Does Delta-8 Stay in the Body?

Delta 8 THC is metabolized in the body similarly to Delta 9 THC. After consumption, Delta 8 THC is absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract and metabolized by the liver into more than 30 metabolites. The primary metabolite of Delta 8 THC is 11-hydroxy-Delta-8 THC, which is also a metabolite of Delta 9 THC. These metabolites are then excreted in the urine and feces.

The duration of a Delta 8 high can vary depending on factors such as the dose, the method of consumption, and the frequency of consumption. The amount of time Delta 8 stays in the system can also vary depending on similar factors. Usually, the effects of Delta 8 THC can last for 4-8 hours. Delta 8 THC can be detected in blood and urine for up to 48 hours after consumption and in hair for up to 90 days. The detection window in the saliva is shorter, typically around 24-48 hours.

Lastly, the detection times may vary depending on the form of Delta 8 products consumed. For example, inhalation of Delta 8 THC through vaping may result in faster onset and shorter effects duration than consuming Delta 8 THC edibles or tinctures.

Does Delta-8 Show Up on a Drug Test in Washington?

Delta 8 THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) may cause a positive result on drug tests that screen for THC. This is because many drug tests do not differentiate between different forms of THC and instead detect the presence of THC metabolites in the body. Delta 8 THC can be detected in bodily fluids and hair samples, but the detection window may vary depending on the dose, frequency of use, and the individual's metabolism. Delta 8 THC can be detected in urine for up to 48 hours after use and in hair for up to 90 days. The detection window in blood and saliva is around 24-48 hours.

Drug tests cannot differentiate between Delta 8, Delta 9, and Delta 10 THC, as they are all forms of THC and have similar chemical structures. Therefore, drug tests that screen for THC metabolites will detect all forms of THC, regardless of the specific form consumed.

What Happens if You Get Pulled Over with Delta-8 in Washington?

Per the state Liquor and Cannabis Board (LCB), Delta 8 THC is not an authorized cannabinoid in the state's legal cannabis market. Any products containing this cannabinoid are deemed unlawful.

In Washington State, if you are pulled over for having Delta 8 THC, you may face legal repercussions based on the amount found in your possession and the circumstances of the stop. Under Washington State law, Delta 8 THC is a Schedule I restricted drug, and possessing such a substance may result in criminal charges, penalties, and possibly imprisonment.

Where to Buy Delta-8 in Washington

The state does not allow businesses to manufacture or sell chemically synthesized Delta 8 products. Hence, Delta 8 THC is illegal in the jurisdiction and may not be sold by dispensaries or online retailers in the state.

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