Delta-8 is a product derived from CBD from the hemp plant, but which through chemical processes is converted into THC. It’s very popular now, provided by many online Cannabis stores, such as Delta Extrax.
The president of Puerto Rico Legal Marijuana (PRLM), Goodwin Aldarondo, warned about the presence on the island of cannabis products with the Delta-8 THC component and demanded urgent action from the government to establish restrictions on the sale of said products. This, given the risk that the acquisition of products without a license can present for consumers, without being subjected to tests and obtained in the market without regulation. Likewise, he highlighted that the legality of Delta-8 THC rests in a gray area of the 2018 Farm Bill.
Delta-8 is a product derived from CBD from the hemp plant, but which through chemical processes is converted into THC. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the component by which the medical cannabis industry is regulated and which at the federal level remains a type 1 controlled substance.
Delta-8 THC has taken the market for cannabis products in the United States by storm, and is already on sale in other countries. It has had a great boom among consumers due to its similarity to Delta-9 THC, which is the main component of cannabis that produces the effects of psychoactive drugs, sedation, and relief of symptoms of health conditions, among many others. Both are very similar in their chemical structure, so Delta-8 can provide the same effects, but less potently than Delta-9. Today, the best Delta 8 THC is really dominating the cannabis market.
Delta 8 can be found in cannabis and hemp plants; and since the cultivation of hemp is legal, it is obtained from there more easily, which has led to the Delta-8 being considered legal, claiming that it comes from hemp. However, its legality is covered in a gray area of the federal regulatory framework of the 2018 Farm Bill, which indicates that hemp, which is a variety of the cannabis plant with less than 0.3 percent THC, can be transported, used for extractions and sold in the United States. This would put the Delta-8 in legal status in places where the Detail-9 is illegal.
Today, most of the products with Delta-8 are sold outside of the regulated and authorized establishments to sell cannabis; this opens a space where there are no regulations that prevent the entry of people who make and provide products that are almost identical to the regulated products in the medical cannabis industry.
However, the risks of buying unregulated or unlicensed products can go as far as putting people’s lives in danger. We recently saw what happened in 2019 with vaporizer users, where people died from altered products. In fact, earlier this year the United States Cannabis Council supported an investigation into these products with Delta-8, which found that many contained compounds that are not allowed by state laws in regulated cannabis products. Those compounds included the metals chromium, copper, nickel and lead.