Over the past 5 years or so, several people have enjoyed legal access to Delta 8 in Texas. Some use it recreationally, while others, such as veterans, use it for purported health benefits. But a new bill may threaten that. The question is: does it aim for reasonable regulations for Delta 8 and all other THC isomers ? Or does it set out to outright ban them? Keep reading to find out what Senate Bill 264 would do and how it could impact businesses and consumers.
What is Delta 8?
Delta 8 is a natural cannabinoid that can be found in low concentrations in hemp and cannabis plants. It is similar in chemical structure to Delta 9 THC, the main psychoactive compound found in cannabis. However, there are some differences in its effects on the body and mind. Delta 8 is known for its milder psychoactive effects compared to Delta 9. This makes Delta 8 a popular alternative for those who want to experience the benefits of THC without the intense high. It has been used by some people for purported health benefits such as pain relief, anxiety reduction, and appetite stimulation. In recent years, Delta 8 has gained popularity as a recreational substance, with a growing market for Delta 8 products such as edibles, disposable vapes, and vape cartridges.
Related Article: "Is Delta 8 Legal In Your State? Ultimate Guide"
Is Delta 8 Legal in Texas?
So is Delta 8 in Texas? Yes. However, the new bill introduced may reverse that. Per the 2018 Farm Bill, Hemp and its derivatives are federally legal as long as it contains less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC by dry weight. In Texas, House Bill 1325 legalized the production and sale of hemp and hemp-derived products, like Delta 8, on the state level.
With the growing number of states passing bills to either regulate or ban alternative cannabinoids, it’s important to stay informed on where Delta 8 is legal. Visit our Delta 8 Legality Guide for more information.
Safety Concerns About Making Delta 8 Legal In Texas
As the popularity of alternative cannabinoid products like Delta 8 continues to rise, there has been a growing level of concern surrounding Delta 8 products. In Texas specifically, The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and some consumer groups have shared some of their concerns that these products could:
- contain contaminants
- be mislabeled
- exceed the legal THC limit
- be marketing in ways that could be appealing to children
The medical dispensary industry has also voiced their concerns with alternative cannabinoids. However, their concerns are likely rooted in a decrease in sales. Once source indicated there’s been about a 10% reduction of enrollees in medical marijuana treatment- which is equivalent to roughly 3,000 patients.
Despite the apprehensions, several trustworthy brands in the industry already take safety measures in the production of their products. These measures include 3rd party testing and precise labeling to ensure the safety of consumers who use their products. Many of them believe that sensible regulations are needed across the industry to address all the concerns listed above.
Texas’s Proposed Bill - Delta 8's Legality
While other states have already decided Delta 8's fate, the next state deciding whether Delta 8 should be legal is Texas. Sen. Charles Perry, a Republican from Lubbock, filed Senate Bill 264. If passed, what would it do? The bill would ban the production and sale of all synthetic forms of THC, which includes delta-8 products. According to the draft, if this bill passes, the ban would take effect on September 1, 2023.
Related Article: "The 2023 Farm Bill & Hemp: 7 Things To Know"
How This Could Affect Consumers Like You
Since the 2018 Farm Bill was passed, lawmakers have been trying to stop the production of hemp derived products. Let’s take a look at how banning these products could affect consumers. Veterans across the state have turned to Delta 8 products to help them cope with chronic pain. Many of them also deal with depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), attention-deficit disorder (ADD), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). They’re typically prescribed powerful medications for treatment, and some have found the drugs left them feeling numb and tranquilized.
Martin “Ty” Cobb, 48, a retired U.S. Army veteran from Houston told the Houston Chronicle that he tried delta-8 three years ago and was “blown away” by how much it helped his condition. Three years later, he stopped taking many of his prescription medications. He said that Delta 8 has even allowed him to open up a dialogue with loved ones about his situation and his unresolved guilt over being away from his family for so long.
“I don’t understand why they would ban it outright,” Cobb said. “This has helped so many veterans … so why take this away from us now?”
Maddie Wentworth, a public relations junior and member of Texas Horns for Cannabis, said she would be disappointed if the bill were to pass, as she uses delta-8 products recreationally. She said “If (the government) keeps perpetuating this habit of banning all of these drugs that they just aren’t educated about, then they’re going to keep perpetuating ignorance”.
If this bill goes through, thousands of consumers, like the veterans who use Delta 8 to treat their conditions, would lose access to products that alleviate their symptoms. This ban could be particularly problematic for those who cannot benefit from traditional pharmaceutical options due to the side effects or lack of efficacy.
How This Could Affect The Hemp Industry
In the last 2 years, Texas Hemp Growers president, Zachary Maxwell has been advocating for the hemp-derived isomer market. He believes the industry may not survive the proposed bill.
According to him, "Senate Bill 264 would deliver a devastating and potentially fatal blow to Texas’ hemp industry,". He also said, "Texas Hemp Growers is communicating with state officials about our concerns, including the future of THC isomers, and addressing the state’s ban on smokable hemp products."
Ben Meggs, CEO and founder of the Texas business Bayou City Hemp Company, is hopeful that he can work with state lawmakers on a path forward that doesn’t include a complete ban on products like theirs.
He said, “As leaders in the Texas hemp industry, Bayou City Hemp Company is on a mission to legitimize the industry – and that means working with the state to create fair and appropriate regulations… An outright ban will only drive the industry underground which is detrimental to consumer safety, small business growth, and the ability of the state to collect taxes.” He added, “We believe the state has the right to implement regulations, but we suggest they do so under the guidance of creating fair and appropriate laws.”
Where To Find High Quality Delta 8 Near You
In the midst of shifting Delta 8 laws, it can be difficult to stay aware of trusted, dependable brands. Mellow Fellow has Delta 8, Delta 10 and HHC in disposable vapes, vape cartridges, edibles, and prerolls. If you're a Delta 8 fan in a legal state, you can now easily find Delta 8 near you. How? With our store locator, you can find a shop that sells our products near you.
We’re also excited to announce we've released our new 4ml Artist Blend disposable vapes. They're available in 4 different blends and delicious strains. Check them out here. What do you think about the proposed Texas bill? Let us know in the comments. Stay safe and stay mellow.
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