As of July 1st, all Oregon businesses — including gas stations and grocery stores — are banned from selling all artificially derived cannabinoids. And yes, that means the popular cannabinoids Delta 8 and THC-O, along with cannabinol (CBN).
While dozens of states have already banned Delta 8 and other hemp-derived, Oregon is first state to ban all artificially derived cannabinoids. According to Oregon’s own legal definition, the term ‘artificial derived cannabinoids’ refers to any substance created by changing the molecular structure of a compound derived from any cannabis plant, including hemp.
Under the new law, extracting naturally occurring cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, however, remains legal, if it’s licensed by the state.
Why Did the Delta 8 THC Ban Take Place?
State officials argue the ban is necessary due to a lack of testing protocols to assure the safety of these hemp-derived cannabinoids. Manufacturers of the targeted products, however, see the rules as arbitrary and overreaching.
The Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC) says that a lack of sufficient testing necessitated the ban. “We don’t have any testing for any of the whole universe of chemical reagents that you could use to synthetically turn one cannabinoid into something else, or for any of the byproducts of that reaction,” stated Steven Crowley, OLCC’s hemp and processing compliance specialist.
Adverse Events and Delta 8 THC
The FDA reports that over 100 individuals experienced “adverse events” after consuming Delta 8 THC products last year — with 50 percent of them requiring medical attention.
The ban in Oregon applies to all hemp-derived cannabinoids, including Delta 8 and THC-O (also known as THC acetate). It also includes non-psychoactive cannabinoids like CBN, which has shown some success as a sleep aid.
Regulators have made one short-term exception to their ban — in which edible CBN products can be sold up through July 2023 without OLCC approval. Also beginning in July 2023, the department will permit licensed marijuana dispensaries to sell hemp-derived edible products, as long as they receive GRAS approval (“Generally recognized as safe”) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The rule comes despite a federal ruling this May that determined that the 2018 US Farm Bill permits and legally protects the manufacture of hemp-derived cannabinoids. That ruling, however, does not prohibit states from setting their own laws.