RALEIGH, N.C. — Walk into any tobacco, vape or CBD shop in North Carolina, and you’ll likely find delta-8 THC.
It’s similar to marijuana but far less potent. Still, the FDA is warning users to be cautious.
What You Need To Know
- The FDA issues warnings associated with delta-8 THC
- The owner of Triangle-based Nature’s Releaf Hemp Store advises delta-8 users to look out for proper labeling on products
- Delta-8 THC is legal in North Carolina because of the 2018 Farm Bill
Ian Brown is a daily delta-8 user.
He says packing and smoking bowls have changed his life for the better.
“I’ve been off my pain medication hydrocodone since April, my doctor loves it,” Brown said.
Brown is recovering from corrective surgery on his legs.
He used to rely on a walking boot to keep pressure off his feet but not anymore.
“Since using it, I haven’t had to wear it, haven’t had to use my pain medication,” Brown said.
According to Leafly, a website dedicated to cannabis education, delta-8 cannabis is extracted from hemp or cannabis.
It’s legal in North Carolina because of the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized hemp.
Hemp contains less than 0.3% THC. Anything with a higher percentage would be illegal in North Carolina.
When Brown isn’t smoking delta-8, he’s advocating for it as a sales associate for Natures Releaf Hemp Store in Raleigh and Garner.
“If you are looking for actual marijuana there’s something that’s not as potent but similar as far as benefits go,” Brown said.
Like marijuana, the FDA defines delta-8 as a psychoactive substance.
In mid September, the FDA issued several warnings associated with delta-8. They include that delta-8 has psychoactive and intoxicating effects; can be made with potentially harmful chemicals; and can be marketed in ways that put public health at risk.
“People are picking up products that look just like Doritos. Basically, that is Doritos’ logo,” Jennifer Wilson, owner of Natures Releaf Hemp Store, said while holding a pack of what appeared to be edibles. “Inside are Doritos that have been sprayed with a product that we’re not even aware of it what’s in there, because it’s not marked anywhere in the packaging,” Wilson said.
Wilson says distributors are constantly trying to sell her dangerous knock-off delta-8 products.
She says customers need to pay attention to the labeling.
All of her products have QR codes that lead to lab results of the product, in addition to warnings and nutritional labels. Wilson says she won’t sell anything without them.
“You’re only going to know that if you come into a reputable hemp store. You don’t want to go into a tobacco shop and grab anything they have. They may be effective or they may not,” Wilson said.
For Brown, the store is more than a workplace.
It’s an opportunity to educate customers about a product that he says can be life changing.
“Finding something that I believe in and has helped me and so many others. It’s a great field to be in, to be helpful like that,” Brown said.
The FDA also says delta-8 THC products should be kept away from children and pets.