The agricultural improvement act 2018 came with a revolution in the United States to legalize hemp and hemp-derivatives containing the THC concentration of 0.3% and amended the controlled substances act to remove the THC from Schedule I of the CSA list.
But how does it affect the lives of people living in North Carolina? What does this change mean to them? Let’s discover.
Anybody planning to sell, consume, or manufacture Delta-8 products in North Carolina, this Delta-8 THC North Carolina Legal Guide has everything you need.
s Delta-8 Legal in North Carolina?
Yes, Delta-8 is legal in NC. It was legalized in 2019 by house bill 352.
Legislation History of Delta-8 THC in North Carolina
North Carolina worked towards bringing its state law into compliance with federal law. In 2019, the state passed House bill 352 to legalize hemp and defined the relevant definition without significant changes and enacted it much like the Farm Bill. The HB bill also states that THC remains under schedule VI controlled substances except for THC in hemp extracts or hemp products. The bill defines important definitions like hemp, hemp extracts, hemp products, smokable hemp as:
Hemp is a cannabis Sativa plant or any part of the plant, including derivatives, cannabinoids, salts, acids, salts of isomers, and seeds with 0.3% concentration of Delta-9 THC on a dry weight basis.
Hemp extract is defined as an extract from hemp or a mixture containing material or compounds with 0.3% THC concentration in Delta-9. Hemp products are processed or made by the hemp plant or its parts that are prepared and available for commercial use approved by USDA.
Delta-8 THC Explained
I am sure you’re wondering why there was no mention of Delta-8 THC at the state or federal level. The article is about Delta-8 THC’s legality, so here’s the answer: That Delta-8 occurs naturally in two varieties of cannabis Sativa plant, namely hemp, and marijuana. Only Delta 8 derived from the hemp plant is legal as long as it can a THC concentration below 0.3%. If it has a concentration above, it is considered marijuana or Delta 9 THC. Delta-8 provides euphoria, pain relief, and a relaxing effect that is milder due to its lack of potency and is an ideal product for people who do not wish to experience the high associated with substances like Delta-9.
Debate on Delta-8 Legality
As the Farm Bill 2018 didn’t mention the compound, people were confused about what was legal and what wasn’t. Things became more complex when people started producing hemp through a different process called isomerization. The drug enforcement administration(DEA) released an interim final rule stating that “synthetically-derived THC” remains under the list of controlled substances. But again, like state and federal law, there was still ambiguity about what “synthetically-derived” means. If experts and news articles are to be trusted, isomerization is a natural process. This occurs when it is put into different conditions just to fasten up the process, and there’s no use of chemical compounds or reactions added.
Delta-8 Possession Limit in NC
As the compound has been legalized to buy, consume, manufacture federally and at the state level, there’s no possession limit defined for it. However, do you need to be concerned if you have Delta-8 THC? The answer is “Yes” because the compound can be easily confused with Delta-9 THC, which is banned and considered a controlled substance at the state and federal levels. So make sure you have the proper documentation, lab testing, and labeling attached to the products to avoid any issues.
Traveling in NC With Delta-8 THC
Yes, you can carry Delta-8 while traveling. However, there are some exceptions. Ensure the states where you are traveling to and from while in possession of this compound have legalized it. If you are flying, check with your airline. Even though the security inspection procedures are related to your safety. There’s still the possibility that if you are found in possession, your case might be transferred to the local police authority, and you could face some charges. Thus, it’s wise to verify and check everything.
Delta-8 THC: Synthetic or Natural
No, it is a naturally occurring substance in hemp and marijuana plants. Further, there’s no scientific way through which Delta-8 can be produced. Furthermore, a definition of what will be referred to as “synthetic” has not yet been defined.
Delta-8 Consumption and Health Risks
While you have read a lot about how Delta-8 effects are milder and it doesn’t get you “high,.” Delta 8 is unsafe, and it does have side effects similar to Delta-9.
FDA and CDC recently issued a warning on the potentially hazardous nature of this compound as well as the cases of people who have consumed it. Approximately 100 cases of hospitalizations were reported, with over 600 calls received by the poison control centers.
Because of inappropriate labeling and misleading marketing, people don’t even know what they are consuming. There are no guidelines to its consumption, and the consumer itself has to monitor the dose and observe its effect. Despite being marketed as a “diet weed” “weed lite,” this product appears to be contaminated and unadulterated, which are hazardous for consumption. The situation is made even worse because these products are not FDA-approved.
Purchasing Delta-8 in North Carolina
Delta-8 products are widely available in NC online as well offline. These products come in the form of vapes, gummies, hemp flowers, tinctures, etc. You can find them in the gas stations, dispensaries, stores, head shops, and local shops. However, you get a wide variety of options from top websites selling Delta-8 products like Exhale Wellness, Budpop, Hollyweed CBD, Diamond CBD, 3Chi, etc.
Further, when Delta-8 was legalized, there was a birth of an unregulated market of Delta-8 products that were harmful and prepared through unlawful means. Since there are no laws that prevent such markets from operating, and there cannot be any stopping of them. Hence, it becomes our responsibility to check if we are buying the right product.
- Hemp source of the product
- Laboratory testing and labeling
- Customer reviews
- Brand value of the product
Age Criteria for Delta-8 Consumption in North Carolina
North Carolina and federal law doesn’t mention the age-related consumption of Delta-8. However, some states have fixed the age as 21 years. As a result, some retailers can ask you about your age and offer you their products only if you’re 21 years old and above.
Licensing and Cultivation of Hemp in North Carolina
North Carolina Department of agriculture and consumer services has announced that from Jan 2022, all hemp production conducted in the NC state border should comply with USDA rule. The state closed its hemp pilot program on Dec 31, 2021. The licenses issued by the program are invalid, and nobody in the state has been able to grow hemp currently. Unless they have applied and got licensed from the national hemp program, whose application process differs from the NC state program. You need an FBI identity history summary that is nothing but a criminal background check along with your fingerprints. Growers will have to create an account on the hemp Emanagement platform and use it to submit their USDA hemp application. Growers must also select and pay for a USDA-certified sampling agent and labs where their grown hemp samples will be sent for testing. The grower needs to form and register the business under which you intend to grow and also obtain a federal employment identification number.
Further, you need to adhere to the following rules once you are a licensed grower:
- The THC testing of the crop should be done 30 days before the harvesting
- Hot hemp, that is, if the crop THC concentration is over 0.3%, then it will be destroyed.
- Hemp samples are collected by a third-party lab for chemical testing
- The samples are taken from the plant’s flowering top
You can get more information by clicking on this National Hemp Program
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Is Recreational Marijuana Legal in North Carolina?
Recreational marijuana is not fully legal in NC. It is available only to patients suffering from intractable epilepsy, and they can use 5 percent CBD and 0.9% THC. Please note it’s not legal to sell medicinal marijuana. Further, NC recently decriminalized the possession of marijuana for half an ounce or less. Above which, the person has to face 45 days jail sentence and a fine of up to $ 1000. Any possession with <1 ounce but less than ten pounds will be treated as a class 1 felony.
Question: Is Delta-10 THC Legal in North Carolina?
Yes, it’s legal in NC. As long as it contains a limit of 0.3% of THC and to be protected from relevant legislation, it has to be derived from the hemp plant.
Question: Is Delta-8 Legal Nationwide?
Delta-8 is federally legal nationwide. However, 19 states have restricted, regulated, and banned Delta-8; as of date, 30 states have legalized it, and 4 are still considering its legality.
Fundamentally, this is due to the gray area of law in which Delta-8 resides. Also, FDA warnings associated with Delta-8 consumption have increased concern for the states. It is interesting to see how the states will counterbalance the benefits of this compound and consider more stringent regulations.
Question: Is CBD Legal in NC?
Yes, it is legal provided CBD has an acceptable level of THC concentration i.e., 0.3. It is a hemp-derived CBD and has a QR code attached to it that shows the lab testing(not compulsory but advisable). If these conditions are satisfied that it’s legal to buy, possess, sell or manufacture CBD in the state.
Question: Does Delta-8 THC Show up on Your Drug Test?
Yes, it will appear in a drug test and even come with relevant charges of conviction that are applied to people who consume Delta-9 due to the absence of advanced lab facilities or mechanisms that can show which delta THC you have consumed. Delta-8 is a new product, and enough study is yet to be done on this compound. If you have a Delta-8 drug test coming up, you need to stop using it for at least 2-30 days before the test. Based on some tests, the presence of Delta-8 could be detected up to 90 days after consumption.
The Future for Delta-8 in North Carolina
North Carolina has a brief history of allowing Delta-8. As soon as the compound was legalized federally in 2018, the state legalized it after some time. There is still uncertainty surrounding Delta-8, both at the federal and state levels, because of the lack of stronger federal and state regulation. On the other hand, it appears brighter as states are working continuously to broaden their scope of legalization of similar compounds. North Carolina proposed house bill 617 related to legalizing the possession of marijuana up to 2 ounces by adults aged 21 and older, authorizing the regulation of the commercial marijuana market