I want to commend Attorney Rod Knight on bringing this important issue in a recent blog of his: DEA JUST DROPPED A BOMB ON THE HEMP INDUSTRY. PART 2: DELTA-8 THC.

The US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) released an interim final rule (IFR) on August 20th regarding the hemp provisions of the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 (Farm Bill) as it relates to THC (tetrahydrocannabinols) and marijuana under the CSA (Controlled Substance Act). Here is the IFR.

This IFR can have a significant impact on the Hemp Industry, but there is time to get involved by making comments regarding the IFR, this can be done up until October 20th, 2020, by going to Regulations.gov and finding Implementation of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, and you should reference “RIN 1117- AB53/ Docket No. DEA-500” on all comments.

In the IFR the DEA is criminaling sythetic forms of hemp-derived THC, including Delta-8 which is a minor cannabinoid like CBC, CBN, and CBG. It is a double bond isomer of Δ9THC, a more well-known cannabinoid in the tetrahydrocannabinol family that is also produced by the cannabis plant. An isomer is a type of chemical analog. Specifically, an isomer is one of two or more compounds that contain the same number of atoms of the same elements but differ in structural arrangement and properties. There are thirty (30) known THC isomers. Δ8THC and Δ9THC differ with respect to the location of a single double bond.

The 2018 Farm Bill defines lawful “hemp” (7 U.S.C. § 1639o(1)) and distinguishes it from illegal marijuana. Hemp is not a controlled substance under the CSA. (21 USC § 802(16)(B): “The term “marihuana” does not include— (i) hemp, as defined in section 1639o of title 7.”) Importantly, under the Farm Bill, hemp-derived “cannabinoids”, “derivatives”, “extracts”, and “isomers” are themselves “hemp” and thus not controlled substances. In other words, from a legal standpoint they are all “hemp” as defined in the Farm Bill. Δ8THC is a “cannabinoid” and is not a controlled substance when derived from hemp, regardless of its concentration.

From his blog, “

Based on this language, all cannabinoids that are derived from hemp with a delta-9 THC concentration not exceeding 0.3% are lawful. However, the Rule specifically states that any synthetically derived THC remains an illegal Schedule I controlled substance. This begs the question of what is meant by the term “synthetic”. According to Wikipedia, “a synthetic substance or synthetic compound refers to a substance that is man-made by synthesis, rather than being produced by nature. It also refers to a substance or compound formed under human control by any chemical reaction, either by chemical synthesis or by biosynthesis.” (emphasis added)

What this means is that D8 created by a chemical reaction (such as by converting CBD to D8 through the use of a catalyst) will likely be deemed by the DEA to be an illegal synthetic THC. Based on this position it is possible that the DEA will prosecute people and/or initiate civil forfeiture actions against people who are producing and/or selling D8.”

So what you may want to comment on:

The 2018 Farm Bill includes hemp-derived “cannabinoids” and “derivatives” in its definition of “hemp”. In other words, cannabinoids and derivatives of hemp are themselves “hemp” under the statute. For this reason, a derivative of hemp-derived CBD is itself “hemp” under the statute. 

From his post “The Chemicool Dictionary defines a derivative as “a compound that can be imagined to arise or actually be synthesized from a parent compound by replacement of one atom with another atom or group of atoms.” Wikipedia defines a chemical derivative as “a compound that is derived from a similar compound by a chemical reaction.” In this context, a “synthetic” cannabinoid from hemp is the same thing as a “derivative” of hemp. Thus, stating that all synthesized THC is illegal, including D8 and other forms of THC that do not contain more than 0.3% delta-9 THC, is a direct contradiction of the statutory language in the 2018 Farm Bill, which expressly removes hemp derivatives from the CSA.”

Read and make a public comment. If you are in the Hemp Industry you will want to get involved. This can be done up until October 20th, 2020, by going to Regulations.gov and finding Implementation of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, and you should reference “RIN 1117- AB53/ Docket No. DEA-500” on all comments.

I did, its your turn!!!

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