After the 2018 Farm Bill was passed, hemp and hemp-derived products became legal nationwide, including delta 8 THC.
However, states still retain the power to create their own laws and regulations, so delta 8 and other products might still be illegal in certain states.
This article will explain the differences between delta 8 and delta 9 THC, the laws surrounding delta 8 in Washington, and the impact of the new amendment added to the PACT Act.
Additionally, we’ll let you know which types of delta 8 products are available and how you can use each of them, as well as where to buy them.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DELTA 8 THC & DELTA 9 THC?
Delta 8 and delta 9 THC are two isomers found in cannabis plants — just like delta 10 THC. This means that, chemically, they’re very similar molecules that only have small differences in their structure.
Whether you’re a seasoned cannabis user, a beginner, or just curious, chances are you’ve heard of THC before. This is the one compound in cannabis responsible for getting you high.
Generally, THC refers to delta 9 THC. These isomers can’t simply be grouped as THC because the slight differences in their chemical structure also lead to different effects and, in some cases, even another legal classification.
For example, at the federal level, delta 9 is only legal in plants with a concentration lower than 0.3%, but both delta 8 and delta 10 are legal.
Thus, you can use delta 8 to replace delta 9 if you live in a state where the latter is banned, but the former is allowed.
You can also prefer or draw more benefits from delta 8 since some of their properties differ.
HERE ARE THE MAIN DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THESE COMPOUNDS:
- Delta 8 THC can only be found in trace amounts in cannabis (less than 1%) since it’s a by-product of delta 9 chemical degradation
- Delta 9 can be found in concentrations up to 30%
- When it comes to psychotropic effects, delta 8 has roughly half the potency of delta 9
- Delta 8 leads to fewer side effects, like anxiety
- Delta 8 is better at increasing your appetite
- You can develop tolerance to delta 8 faster than to delta 9, but you’ll also regain it faster
- Delta 9 is much cheaper than delta 8
Aside from these differences, you can pretty much draw the same therapeutic benefits from both isomers.
IS DELTA 8 THC SAFE?
Although research on delta 8 THC is still scarce, so far, all evidence points to a great safety profile.
Additionally, since delta 8 has half the potency and leads to fewer and milder side-effects than delta 9, it’s actually much safer since it’s less likely that you have too much by accident.
IS DELTA 8 THC LEGAL IN WASHINGTON STATE?
After the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp and hemp-derived products became legal nationwide — and that includes delta 8 and delta 10 THC but not delta 9 .
According to this bill, hemp can only have a maximum of 0.3% of THC. Otherwise, both the plants and any products made thereof are illegal.
Still, each state has the power to create its own regulations, and that’s what we’re discussing here — yes, it’s legal federally but is delta 8 THC legal in Washington state?
Even though Washington has made delta 9 THC fully legal for medical and recreational purposes, delta 8 THC was recently banned.
The Washington State Liquor Control Board released a statement explaining that cannabis and hemp compounds and genetically or chemically altered products cannot be produced or processed in LCB licensed facilities or be sold in licensed marijuana stores.
This includes delta 8 THC since it isn’t purposefully produced by cannabis or hemp plants. It’s a by-product of the chemical degradation of delta 9 THC, and, therefore, Washington sees it as chemically altered.
WHAT ABOUT DELTA 10 THC?
Delta 10 THC is another form of THC produced from hemp plants. It shares similar effects as delta 8 and delta 9 THC but is more stimulating. This cannabinoid is most often used as a nootropic for improving focus, concentration, and mental energy.
Delta 10 THC is regulated the same way as delta 8, so it’s also illegal in the state of Washington.
DO I NEED A MEDICAL CARD IN WASHINGTON TO ORDER DELTA 8 THC?
You won’t get a medical card for delta 8 THC in Washington since this compound is banned for both medical and recreational purposes in the state.
DELTA 8 THC VAPES & THE PACT ACT
In 2009, the Prevent All Cigarette Trafficking (PACT) Act was added to the Jenkins Act, created in 1949 . This amendment aimed to:
- Put an end to the sale of untaxed cigarettes;
- Ban the US Postal Service from shipping cigarettes and smokeless tobacco;
- Enforce stricter standards for private shipping companies that ship these products to businesses and residences;
- Increase control over businesses selling these products by forcing them to register with their state tax administrators and with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF);
- Impose strict regulations on tax collection, namely, by demanding that online sellers collect local and state taxes.
In 2020, to restrict and regulate the sale of vaping products, the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act was added as an amendment to the PACT Act .
This new act changed the definition of ‘cigarettes.’ Now, legally, all smoking and vaping products are included in the definition of ‘cigarettes,’ whether or not they contain nicotine.
Hence, delta 8 vaping products are also affected by this change in policy. So much so that this act is commonly referred to as the ‘vape mail ban.’
Here are a few changes the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act brought about:
- Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) cannot be shipped by the US Postal Service, only by private shipping companies;
- Sellers must verify their customers’ age before purchasing, and an adult with ID must be present to receive the package upon delivery;
- Companies must add tax stamps to all products sold to comply with local and state taxes;
- Companies must send a detailed list of monthly transactions to their respective state administrators;
- Companies must register with local and state tax administrators and the ATF, and the US Attorney General.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO VAPERS?
This act will surely affect vapers and companies alike. While companies ought to adapt quickly to this new reality if they want to survive, customers:
- Will see these new regulations reflected on products’ price tags;
- Will possibly need to find replacements for their usual products;
- Will need to confirm they’re old enough to buy these products and have their ID when receiving packages.
Additionally, we advise that you don’t purchase from brands that don’t verify your age before selling vaping products. Aside from being illegal, those companies are probably cutting corners and conducting other unethical practices.
HOW TO USE DELTA 8 THC
There are plenty of delta 8 products to choose from. You need to consider your taste, lifestyle, and/or the problem you’re targeting with delta 8 to pick the best products for you.
Following are a few ways you can consume this compound, how to use each of them, and their pros and cons.
1. DELTA 8 THC OILS & TINCTURES
Oils and tinctures are a versatile and easy-to-use option to get your delta 8.
You can ingest them as they come, mix them with food or beverages, or hold them under your tongue for 30 to 60 seconds before swallowing. Additionally, you can choose from different flavors.
The defining difference between oils and tinctures is that the latter have ingredients in their formulation that increase their bioavailability, meaning that your body can absorb and process them faster than oils.
When you ingest them, you’ll have to wait at least 30 minutes to start feeling their effects. However, if you hold them sublingually first, the effects show up faster.
2. DELTA 8 THC DISTILLATES
Distillates are not as common as oils and tinctures because delta 8 THC is only found in minimal amounts in cannabis plants, making it hard to isolate.
You won’t be able to find distillates made up only of delta 8. The maximum concentration you can expect is 65% – the other 35% can be delta 9, CBD, or another cannabis compound.
Distillates are just as versatile as oils and tinctures. You can eat it by pairing it up with foods, vaporize and inhale, or smoke them with a dab rig.
The last two options are the most popular ones, and the effects show up much faster; it’ll take 10 minutes or less.
3. DELTA 8 THC EDIBLES
Edibles are a great alternative to oils and tinctures if you don’t like their color or consistency. Additionally, they’re much easier to dose since you know how much delta 8 is in each of them. That’s why many people do prefer to use it to consume delta 8 THC.
Since they’re meant to be ingested, they act in your body the same way that oils and tinctures do, and you’ll only feel its effects at least 30 minutes after consumption.
Even if you don’t feel anything, wait at least one hour before taking a second edible.
The most popular delta 8 THC edibles are capsules and gummies. You can have fun trying different gummy flavors.
4. DELTA 8 THC VAPES
Inhaling vaporized delta 8 is the fastest way to get its effects. If you’re looking for quick, urgent relief, vaping is the option for you.
Vaping is also super easy — you need to take a deep breath and hold in the vapor for as long as you want. Moreover, vape pens are small; you can easily and discreetly take them with you anywhere.
5. DELTA 8 THC FLOWER
If you like smoking cannabis, delta 8 THC flower is probably the best method for you.
You can still enjoy the cannabis flavor and aroma while getting your delta 8 dose in. And you can use delta 8 flowers just like regular cannabis flowers — except you can’t make edibles with it.
Although delta 8 THC can only be found in trace amounts in cannabis, some companies are aging flowers to increase the delta 8 concentration.
By exposing the flower to environmental conditions, like oxygen and UV light, delta 9 THC naturally converts to delta 8.
WHERE TO BUY DELTA 8 THC — WASHINGTON
Delta 8 THC products are illegal in Washington, so you won’t be able to find them for sale in dispensaries or online stores.
However, if you could, buying online is the best option by far.
You’d find a much better deal online, including lower prices, special offers, like bulk buying options, and better discounts.
Also, online, you’d find a much greater variety of products than in a dispensary, and you can take as much time as you need comparing them, analyzing labels and ingredients, and checking the Certificates of Analysis.
In online shops, usually, products are fresher since dispensaries keep them in stock for a long time.
Another advantage is that online retailers face much steeper competition and, thus, abide by higher quality standards.
And, finally, buying online is much more convenient — you only need to order it after you’ve picked the products you want, and they’ll make their way to your doorstep.
WHAT’S THE FUTURE OF DELTA 8 THC IN WASHINGTON?
Although Washington is a cannabis-friendly state, delta 8 was purposefully banned.
You can still enjoy the therapeutic benefits and psychoactive effects of cannabis, but you don’t have the option of going for delta 8 or 10 instead of delta 9 (which is legal in the state).
To get your delta 9 THC products, online is the best option. You only need to keep in mind that the new amendment to the PACT Act will make it harder and more costly to order vaping products.
Given that delta 9 is legal in Washington and that the whole country seems to be moving towards legalization, we expect delta 8 THC to become legal in the state in the future.