Those looking to give delta 8 THC a try in the peach state are in for a sweet surprise. Because Georgia has no specific regulations that say otherwise, individuals are free to purchase a variety of hemp products, including delta 8 THC.
Regulations in Georgia tend to follow federal regulations outlined in the 2018 Farm Bill. Essentially, any product containing less than 0.3% delta 9 THC by dry weight is considered legal. The Georgia Department of Agriculture uses this standard and does not explicitly ban delta 8 THC products like a handful of other US states.
Because federal and state regulations have decided to regulate cannabis by this method, other THC forms, such as delta 8 and delta 10, remain legal. Laws never mention delta 8 THC by name, so it exists within a bit of a legal grey area.
IS DELTA 8 THC LEGAL IN GEORGIA?
While typical delta 9 THC cannabis remains illegal, no laws specify other forms of THC as unlawful. Before 2018, delta 8 THC and many hemp products would have been banned, but that has since changed.
Georgia’s regulations directly follow the language used in the federal ruling. These regulations were most recently updated by the Farm Bill in 2018. The Farm Bill amended how the federal government regulates the hemp industry at large. Primarily, it sought to revise federally scheduled substances to give the hemp industry more breathing room.
However, many new hemp-related products suddenly became de-scheduled as a side effect of the Farm Bill. Instead of nearly all hemp products being banned, only cannabis containing more than .03% of delta 9 THC would be controlled. This regulatory decision opened the door for American hemp growers to sell many other hemp derivatives such as CBD and delta 8 THC.
Because federal law supersedes state law in the United States, Georgia’s laws are the same as federal ones. If Georgia decides one day that they would rather ban delta 8 THC, they would be free to do so. Until such a day, though, the federal ruling remains.
It’s doubtful somebody will get in trouble for possessing delta 8 THC products in Georgia. At least until further federal or state action on the matter is taken, that is.
WHAT ABOUT DELTA 10 THC?
Delta 10 THC exists in the same legal grey area as delta 8 THC. In Georgia and across much of the United States, delta 10 THC can be freely bought. So long as a hemp-derived product does not contain too much of the outlawed delta 9 THC, it is legal according to federal law.
Further, Georgia law does not expressly ban either delta 8 or delta 10 THC. If Georgia’s government decided to define both substances and control them, they could become illegal. No such actions have occurred.
DO I NEED A MEDICAL CARD IN GEORGIA TO ORDER DELTA 8 THC?
No, anyone over 21 can buy delta 8 THC in Georgia without a medical card or prescription. The laws around this are generally the same as CBD products. Still, it is recommended that one purchases delta 8 THC or CBD products from reliable vendors.
Georgia also has a limited medical marijuana program. Approved physicians can prescribe low dosage amounts of delta 9 THC oil to those with certain medical conditions such as epilepsy, PTSD, and cancer. If one wants to acquire a medical card, they must first speak with their physician.
If an individual’s doctor sees delta 9 THC as a possible treatment, they will fill out the required paperwork and submit it to the Georgia Department of Public Health. If approved, the government will mail a medical card to the patient. Patients can then acquire low dosage delta 9 THC from select vendors.
DELTA 8 VAPES & THE PACT ACT
In the United States, federal law requires that all online vendors verify age before selling any vape products. This is because of the PACT act. The law, passed by congress initially to cut down on cigarette trafficking, has been revised to include vape products.
Because of how the law is written, all tobacco and vape products must require age verification. This includes juice, batteries, cartridges, accessories, and even delta 8 THC products. Websites must comply with age verification practices and regularly submit information about their business to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.
If a business does not comply, the ATF likely knows because they closely monitor businesses. More importantly, though, a company not complying with age verification could be cutting corners elsewhere. It’s a small price to pay, but age verification requires more resources to conduct business online.
If a business is not verifying age, not only is it highly unethical, but it could be a sign of adulterated products. If they cannot afford to verify age, they probably cannot afford quality delta 8 THC.
Purchasing delta 8 products online is the most reliable and safe method, but only when purchasing from vendors willing to comply with the law. Double-check all third-party tests and be wary of businesses willing to sell to minors.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DELTA 8 THC & DELTA 9 THC?
Delta 8 THC and delta 9 THC are similar in some respects but very different in others. Essentially, delta 8 THC is a broken-down form of its illegal cousin. Over time, delta 9 THC molecules degrade into delta 8. Delta 8 THC is much less potent than its cousin, though, so larger doses are required to obtain similar effects.
What is most important is the slight difference in the molecular structure of both substances. If you could observe both substance’s structures, it would be hard to see the difference. Yet, one double bond between two molecules makes delta 8 THC different.
This slight difference in chemical bonds makes delta 8 THC less potent and legal. These substances are both derived from the cannabis plant but in different ways.
Delta 9 THC occurs in large amounts in the flower of the marijuana plant, while delta 8 does not. Instead, delta 8 THC tends to be produced by extracting elements from hemp plants and then further refining that into delta 8 THC.
Both forms of THC affect the brain in a similar way, though. Essentially, THC binds to neuroreceptors in the brain, causing misfires. These misfires impact how the brain communicates about pleasure and memory.
IS DELTA 8 THC NATURAL?
The word natural doesn’t bear much relevance to how products are regulated in the United States. According to the FDA, companies can use the term natural to market virtually anything. There is no red tape or legal process required to stick a natural label on something.
Still, to most people, natural does mean something. Many think about a substance that is obtained from nature without excess tampering by humans. Products don’t have to follow such a definition, though. While it may seem unethical to market a product as natural, even if it is wholly made in a lab, no laws prevent it.
Whether or not delta 8 THC is ‘natural,’ then, is debatable. Because the substance does not occur in large enough amounts in the marijuana plant, producers must undertake a lab-based process to obtain it.
Whether or not that is a natural process is up to each individual to decide for themselves. It is, however, possibly why the DEA does not regulate delta 8 THC as a synthetic. Because the process originates from the hemp plant, it isn’t considered a substance seeking to “synthesize” delta 9 THC.
Making delta 8 THC merely involves converting one naturally occurring molecule into another naturally occurring molecule by creating environmental conditions that best facilitate this process.
HOW TO USE DELTA 8 THC?
There are a few standard ways to consume delta 8 THC. All of them are similar to standard methods of consuming CBD and other cannabis. Some of these methods include:
Each method has its pros and cons, but the most popular tend to be vape cartridges. Because delta 8 THC is much less potent than its delta 9 counterpart, one must consume more of it to experience effects. Vape cartridges tend to contain the most delta 8 THC.
Because oil tends to contain the most delta 8 THC by amount, it’s frequently used in other products. Delta 8 THC oil is first extracted from hemp plants then used as the base for other products.
WHERE TO BUY DELTA 8 THC?
When purchasing any product for consumption, a healthy amount of skepticism is necessary. Although delta 8 THC is widely available in gas stations and smoke shops, there’s a real lack of regulation. It’s doubtful that gas station employees truly know where their delta 8 products came from, and the risk of adulteration can be high.
The most reliable and safe way to purchase delta 8 THC in Georgia is to go through a reputable online manufacturer. This allows for a consumer to cut out any risk that middlemen pose. Further, the manufacturer has a significant stake in their product. Because their livelihood is on the line, it’s unlikely they will adulterate their products.
Here at Area 52, we use our products too. So there’s literally no way we’d even consider the idea of adulterating our stash or allowing it to become contaminated.
If you’re reading this but still want to order from another brand, make sure you check the lab tests before buying. Growers across the United States are required by law to have a reputable third-party lab test their hemp products, but secondary vendors are not. These tests are the only way to prove a product is clean, pure, and contains legal doses of delta 9 THC.
WHAT’S THE FUTURE OF DELTA 8 THC IN GEORGIA?
Across the United States, all forms of marijuana are starting to become legal. Fifteen states now allow for recreational cannabis use, and more are considering adopting similar laws. In Georgia, recreational cannabis is not legal, but it may become legal down the road.
As for delta 8 THC, it’s unlikely that it will be banned anytime soon in the Peach State. If anything, delta 9 THC may become legal, and those looking to purchase any form of cannabis will be able to find it within just a few blocks of where they live.