Oregon is a state that has its own set of laws regulating the sale and possession of cannabis products. The recent legalization of recreational marijuana in Oregon has created a new market for these products, and Delta 8 THC is one such product. But what does this mean for the legality of Delta 8 THC in the state? Let's explore the legalities behind buying and selling Delta 8 THC in Oregon.
Yes, Delta 8 THC is legal in the State of Oregon.
In Oregon, Delta 8 THC is allowed. This comes as great news for Delta-8 THC users who at one point were concerned about whether the cannabinoid hemp product is legal in the state. Since hemp-derived Delta-8 THC comes from usable hemp originating from industrial hemp stalk, Oregon has no other current laws beyond what the federal 2018 Farm Bill specifies which is to ensure the products don't exceed the federal limit for Delta-9 THC which is .3% as measured on a dry weight basis.
With Delta-8 THC likened as a "cousin" to Delta-9 THC, which Measure 91 of 2014 legalized adult-use marijuana in the state, it opened up an entirely new marijuana industry in the state. Additionally, by amending the list of controlled substances, possession of marijuana became less of a concern and ended the decades-long prohibition of marijuana in Oregon.
With Delta-8 THC made for human consumption, we understand you may have questions regarding it's legality in the state. From Portland to Medford, Oregon Delta 8 flower and all of the hemp-derived edibles it provides are now available for sale within the state.
Is an Oregon Delta-8 Ban coming?
In a news release by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), which monitors the state's legal cannabis and alcohol industries, the agency announced its concern with Delta-8 THC being unregulated and urged state lawmakers to introduce new legislation to help regulate Delta 8 THC Products within the state. Some media outlets proclaim these limits would target banning Delta 8 THC Products for people under 21 years old. There are other media outlets suggesting that lawmakers would be introducing legislation for having state-licensed cannabis companies producing the products. And still other media outlets are suggesting that the legislation would focus on where the product could be sold such as OLCC-regulated retailers, instead of un-regulated convenience stores.
KOIN 6 News was one of the first to release the breaking news when new bill A-Engrossed House Bill 3000 was released and referred to Rules by order of the Speaker. Now that B-Engrossed House Bill 3000 has been released and has been referred to Ways and Means by the Speaker, we want to cover those details pertaining to the current legislation.
Current Oregon Delta-8 Legislation
As it stands now, the legislature is only a couple steps away from passing a new bi-partisan bill which would regulate Delta-8 THC in the State of Oregon. Sponsored by Representatives Wilde, Morgan and Leif, House Bill 3000 would provide the following:
- OLCC given authority to set potency limits for Delta-8 THC Products along with Delta-8 THC testing limits and protocols
- Establishing a new task force investigating how new cannabis and hemp-derived products will integrate within the current legal cannabis market in the state
- Redefine Delta-8 THC as a form of “Adult use cannabinoid”
In the latest version of the bill, it provides the following:
“Adult use cannabinoid” includes, but is not limited to, tetrahydrocannabinols, tetrahydrocannabinolic acids that are artificially or naturally derived, delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, the optical isomers of
delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol and any artificially derived cannabinoid that is reasonably determined to have an intoxicating effect.
"Adult use cannabis item” means:
(a) A marijuana item; or
(b) An industrial hemp commodity or product that exceeds:
(A) The concentration of adult use cannabinoids established by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, in consultation with the Oregon Health Authority and the State Department of Agriculture, by rule; or
(B) The greater of:
(i) A concentration of more than 0.3 percent total delta-9- tetrahydrocannabinol; or
(ii) The concentration of total delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol allowed under federal law.
A person may not sell, transfer or deliver to a consumer an industrial hemp commodity or product that contains cannabinoids and is intended for human consumption unless:
(a) The industrial hemp commodity or product has been tested in accordance with ORS 571.330 and any rules adopted pursuant to ORS 571.330;
(b) If the hemp commodity or product is intended for human consumption by ingestion, the hemp commodity or product was processed in a facility licensed by the State Department of Agriculture under ORS 616.695 to 616.755 or in a facility in another state or jurisdiction that meets requirements substantially similar to requirements established under ORS 616.695 to 616.755;
(c) The person obtains and maintains documentation of the results of the testing;
(d) If the industrial hemp commodity or product is sold to a person under 21 years of age or any representations are made to the consumer about the concentration of delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol, the results of the testing required under this subsection demonstrate the concentration of delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol;
(e) The industrial hemp commodity or product does not contain more than 0.3 percent tetrahydrocannabinol or the concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol allowed under federal
law, whichever is greater; and
(f) The industrial hemp commodity or product does not exceed the concentration of adult use cannabinoids established by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, in conjunction with the Oregon Health Authority and State Department of Agriculture, by rule.
With these new rules, essentially lawmakers will be giving authority to the OLCC to monitor concentration levels of the newly-created definition of "Adult Use Cannabinoids". An age limit of 21 years or older seems to be coming with this new legislation. Additionally, people of all ages will be required to have the certificate of analysis (CoAs) on-hand to verify the potency of the products purchased.
Regulation could help the entire industry in formalizing standards, and Oregon is leading the charge. Instead of a "ban", legislation seems to be focused on how to keep Delta-8 THC legal, but keep it out of the wrong hands. Now let's transition to current laws as they're written and enforced today.
Hemp legality in Oregon has been updated to clarify the difference between hemp and marijuana. This new law broadens legal availability of hemp products so long as they are manufactured according to Oregon’s regulations.
According to Chapter 603 Division 48 on Industrial Hemp, it provides the following definitions:
“Tetrahydrocannabinol” or "THC" means tetrahydrocannabinol and has the same meaning as delta-9 THC.
“Total THC” means the molar sum of THC and THCA.
"THCA" means tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, Chemical Abstracts Service Number 23978-85-0.
By definition, the State of Oregon monitors Delta-9 THC and THCA which are technically different molecules than that of Delta-8 THC.
Additionally, in the same document it specifies what is defined as Industrial Hemp and Industrial Hemp Products, as the following:
Means all non-seed parts and varieties of the Cannabis plant, whether growing or not, that contain an average tetrahydrocannabinol concentration that does not exceed 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.
Industrial Hemp Commodity or Product:
Means an item processed by a handler containing any industrial hemp or containing any chemical compounds derived from industrial hemp, including CBD derived from industrial hemp.
With these rules in place, it helps to provide clarity why hemp-derived Delta-8 THC is legal in the state. As any compounds from industrial hemp are legal so long as they don't exceed .3% Delta-9 THC, as defined in the previous example, a hemp item falls under either of the two categories above.
Usable hemp transformed from the plant such as hemp extracts, hemp concentrates or a hemp edible are referred to as Industrial hemp commodities. A cannabinoid hemp product such as hemp-derived Delta-8 THC, as one of the natural isomers of hemp plant is protected by the rules as it is defined as a hemp cannabinoid product.
On the other hand, flowers of hemp, industrial hemp leaves or hemp stalk itself fall under "industrial hemp" which is limited to not exceed .3% Delta-9 THC.
Oregon Industrial Hemp Act
The 2018 Farm Bill gave the Department of Agriculture regulatory authority over the cultivation of hemp in the state. Today, the Oregon Industrial Hemp Program provides resources online for hemp growers, handlers and testing laboratories in the state. Additionally, the Department of Agriculture works alongside partners on both the state-level and federal-level in order to oversee the compliance for participants in the program.
List of controlled substances
Prescription drugs and the like are all listed on the controlled substances list, however, now marijuana (and hemp) are not. With a permanent administrative order that was effective 6/23/2020, exemptions were added to the Division 80 Schedule of Controlled Substances List which effectively removed "Marijuana and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)" from the list of controlled substances. Delta-8 wasn't mentioned by name in the list of controlled substances which makes it legal in Oregon outside of the state’s adult cannabis market.
Buying and Shipping Delta 8 in Oregon
Since Delta 8 is legal in the State of Oregon, residents can shop for Delta 8 THC products with a shipping address located in the state. Delta 8 THC Products derived from the industrial hemp plant do not require any special card in order to purchase either in-store or online.
Advocacy Groups in Oregon Supporting Delta 8 and Hemp Laws
Oregonians are continuously showing support of Delta 8 and pushing progress towards better Hemp Laws in the state. Check out some of the standout organizations in Oregon: