A (seemingly) simple question: is Delta 8 legal in Ohio?
The short answer is yes.
The state law in Ohio fully complies with the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized all hemp-derived cannabinoids on the federal level.
However, the ongoing cannabis legalization situation is rather dynamic and unpredictable.
Read on to learn more about Delta 8 THC legality in Ohio.
What Is Delta-8?
Delta 8 THC is one of the naturally occurring active cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. Both hemp and marijuana plants produce Delta 8 THC.
Unlike the naturally abundant Delta 9 THC and CBD, Delta 8 THC belongs to the family of minor cannabinoids.
Thus, to extract a sustainable amount of Delta 8 THC, experts use cannabinoid conversion to turn CBD into Delta 8 THC.
Meanwhile, I can personally attest that the feeling you get from Delta 8 THC is similar to consuming traditional Delta 9 THC.
In addition, according to still-limited studies, Delta 8 THC is milder in potency. The relaxing effects relate to lower chances of paranoia, dizziness, and anxiety typically associated with Delta 9 THC.
Delta-8 THC Is Federally Legal
In May 2022, the supreme court stated that Delta 8 THC is federally legal when ruling over a case associated with a trademark dispute.
Yup. The federal government has cleared the haze since the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals deemed Delta 8 THC legal, at least in respect to trademark protection.
This confirms that Delta 8 is legal in line with the 2018 federal farm bill outside of states that explicitly outlaw it.
This is the first ruling of its kind, although since 2018, under both state and federal law, Delta 8 has been available to purchase, use, possess, and produce except in states which explicitly banned it.
Nonetheless, the situation with the legality and use of hemp-derived THC isomers remains complex due to how Delta 8 THC is made.
Back in 2020, the DEA issued an Interim Final Rule, aka IFR. This rule addressed the legal status of Delta 8 and how it could be considered a synthetic cannabinoid based on the method of production.
But, the DEA ruling was more reading between the lines compared to the supreme court’s explicit statement.
Delta-8 THC Law In Ohio
Yes. Delta 8 is technically legal in Ohio. Yet simultaneously, it remains confusing.
Ultimately, most people are confused between state laws and federal law regarding any Delta 8 hemp product out there.
The big questions on the frontline:
- Is Delta 8 THC legal in Ohio?
- Can you buy Delta 8 in Ohio?
Yes, Delta 8 is legal in Ohio.
And another yes: you can buy Delta 8, and you can even travel across state lines into Ohio with hemp-derived Delta 8 as its legal at the federal level.
Currently, you’ll find various cannabis products available to purchase all across Ohio. These are available in health stores, convenience stores, and even gas stations.
A precious bit of friendly advice: avoid buying Delta 8 THC products from any gas stations.
Plenty of anecdotal reports warn users to stay away from gas station cannabis offerings.
Also, studies show that mislabeling and contamination continue to plague the cannabis industry.
Delta 8 or CBD products sold at gas stations are not your wisest buying decision. You have no guarantee of what gets into your body.
Your safest bet?
Purchase Delta 8 THC from reputable CBD stores, dispensaries, or reliable online brands.
Meanwhile, the unique cannabis compound Delta 8 keeps skyrocketing in popularity, and the Ohio state law is quickly catching up with the waves.
Governor Mike DeWine signed a crucial piece of legalization in mid-May 2019: The Ohio Senate Bill 57.
Ohio Senate Bill 57 regulates hemp-derived products in the state of Ohio. It makes all hemp-derived cannabinoids, such as CBD, Delta 8 THC, and CBC, among others, legal to sell, possess, and manufacture.
So, as long as the hemp product contains less than 0.3% THC, they fit the requirements of the 2018 Farm Bill.
2022 Changes – Delta 8 MMJ Ohio Regulation
In the meantime, the medical marijuana program in Ohio made some additional changes in April 2022.
This new medical marijuana regulation redefined THC to contain all THC isomers, not just Delta 9 THC alone. This rule directly affects Delta 8 THC since it’s an isomer of THC.
Prior to the changes in the Ohio medical marijuana program, only a few products (if any) on the market would contain a complete list of THC isomers. But this has already changed.
The Ohio revised code new rule went into effect on May 2, 2022.
As such, any medical marijuana product in Ohio must now test for and certify the level of Delta 8. Then again, this applies to all other isomers of THC, such as Delta-1 and Delta 10 THC, to name a few.
The Ohio Department of Commerce is one of the three agencies involved in the management of the Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program.
Jennifer Jarrell, the spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Commerce, further highlighted that this change opens new doors to hemp-derived active compounds.
Ultimately, the updated label rules have nothing to do with banning hemp-derived THC isomers. The new rule simply requires that all cannabinoids in Ohio medical marijuana products get measured and included on the label to clearly indicate the “Total THC” amount present in the hemp products.
Furthermore, the new rule clarifies that Delta 8 medical marijuana products are fully legal in Ohio.
Ohio’s newly set medical marijuana rules only concern medical cannabis and not hemp-derived Delta 8 products.
The confusion and uncertainty on whether Delta 8 is legal in Ohio or not are but a byproduct of the confusing federal laws.
Currently, all Delta 8 products sold for recreation remain unregulated beyond Bill 57.
Delta-8 THC Is Ilegal When State Outlaw It
So, we’ve established that Delta 8 is federally legal, based on the 2018 Farm Bill. Also, back in 2019, Ohio joined the list of states that legalized hemp.
However, states do have the right to ban it or to apply any further restrictions on Delta 8 hemp products.
Ultimately, states have to ban it on their own accord individually.
Sprinkle all of this with the fact that DEA has been aiming at Delta 8 THC for quite some time now.
Therefore, we can’t know when and if the DEA and the federal government will place Delta 8 THC as part of the list of controlled substances, regardless of whether it’s extracted from hemp or marijuana.
However, as the Farm Bill is due for an update in 2023, I’d bet that we will see a couple of changes that will effectively regulate or schedule Delta 8 via an update in federal law.
When you take these factors all together, you can get the bigger picture.
It’s like, the government is shouting out loud:
“We legalized hemp but you can’t really know if a hemp product is legal unless you carefully and continuously check out for changes in the state law.”
What a bummer.
Will Ohio Ban Delta 8 THC?
There seems to be no upcoming state legislation that aims to change the legal status of Delta 8 in Ohio, and all hemp-derived Delta 8 products <0.3% Delta 9 THC comply with Ohio state law.
Yet different states have already begun posing restrictions to ban Delta 8.
While this has begun, it’s a slow process. As of now, Delta 8 remains legal in Ohio.
At the time of writing, 20 U.S. states have already restricted, regulated, or banned Delta 8:
- North Dakota
- New York
- Rhode Island
Also, 4 states are currently reviewing the legal status of Delta 8:
Wrapping Up Delta 8 In Ohio
Currently, Delta 8 is legal in Ohio, just like it’s legal in most states.
But remember, this can change quite quickly because it doesn’t need to be added to the controlled substances act to be regulated at the state level.