CCIA calls for monitoring of delta-8 THC and other cannabinoids

Unintended loopholes in the 2018 Farm Bill allowed intoxicating hemp-derived cannabinoids to create a “Wild West” of unregulated products, the head of a major California cannabis trade group said this week.

In a white paper Released Oct. 19 by the Sacramento-based California Cannabis Industry Association (CCIA), members of the group are calling for urgent reform as they say “dangers” associated with intoxicating products sold as hemp continue to pose a widespread threat to public health.

The CCIA represents hundreds of legal California cannabis businesses and works to promote the growth of a responsible and legitimate industry.

“Policymakers have inadvertently created a Wild West of hemp-derived intoxicants that endanger the health of consumers across the country,” CCIA Board Chair Pamela Epstein said in the book. White. “The proliferation of these unregulated and untested synthetic cannabinoids is a public health crisis, and we call for immediate action to protect public safety.”

In September 2021, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning statementand the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory statement warning potential consumers of adverse effects associated with hemp-derived products containing delta-8 THC, which can be synthesized from CBD. These effects range from vomiting, hallucinations, difficulty standing and loss of consciousness, to deep sedation, slowed breathing, irregular heartbeats and decreased blood pressure, according to the two federal agencies. .

RELATED: Delta-8 THC Poses ‘Serious Health Risks’, Two Federal Agencies Warn

In addition to delta-8 THC, CCIA officials cited several other cannabinoid compounds in the report titled “Pandora’s Box: The Dangers of a National, Unregulated, Hemp-Derived Intoxicating Cannabinoid Market.”

Some of the other cannabinoid compounds mentioned include:

  • THC-P, that a Scientific reports 2019 one study found 30 times higher binding affinity to human receptors than delta-9 THC[AR2] which makes it more intoxicating;
  • THCjd, which is promoted for its “unique psychedelic effects” and is would be 19 times more intoxicating than THC;
  • THC-Oa semi-synthetic derivative, which would be two to three times more powerful than THC.
  • Delta-10 THC, which is similar to delta-8 but not derived from any plant compound; and
  • HHCwhich is modified with THC to be more potent than delta-8 or delta-10.


The 2018 Farm Bill specifically defining the legal delta-9 THC concentration of 0.3% for hemp, but not defining delta-8 or other minor cannabinoid concentrations, lesser known compounds are often derived and included in the products. Some of these products mimic popular snacks or appear like candy and are sometimes promoted based on their high potency or even their ability to help people evade drug tests, according to the CCIA.

“We routinely see products with up to 10 times the intoxicants allowed on the regulated California cannabis market packaged under names such as ‘THC Hot Cheetos’, ‘Cookie Monster’ and ‘Lucky Charmz’ to appeal directly to children. said CCIA Executive Director Lindsay Robinson. “The way these products are sold, it’s easier for a child to get their hands on than a six-pack of beers. We urgently need laws, regulatory frameworks and enforcement that recognize that an intoxicant is an intoxicant.

According to the report, unregulated products are available without age limits or testing standards and are sold at gas stations, convenience stores, smokehouses and online (without interstate oversight).

“Intentionally or not, the 2018 Farm Bill left the barn door open and so-called ‘hemp’ manufacturers walked through it, creating a rapidly growing market for dangerous intoxicants,” said Tiffany Devitt. , lead author of the article, Vice Chairman of the CCIA Board of Directors. president and head of regulatory affairs for March and Ash and CannaCraft. “There are steps that can and should be taken to protect the public, ranging from much-needed enforcement of existing laws to action by Congress and federal and state regulators.”

In the report’s conclusion, CCIA officials made four recommendations to address the “public health crisis” they say stems from the 2018 Farm Bill:

  1. Create a unified federal framework to regulate intoxicating cannabinoids that is aligned with current science and balances consumer access and safety. This includes legalizing and regulating cannabis at the federal level and subjecting all plants grown for their cannabinoid content to similar regulations rather than an arbitrary THC threshold.
  2. Congressional action to close unintended loopholes in the Farm Bill that are being exploited to sell intoxicating cannabinoids outside of regulated markets.
  3. Action by the FDA to exercise its authority to approve or disapprove of new synthetic compounds that are not found in the plant in commercial quantities.
  4. Enforcing existing laws in California (and other states, where applicable) that prohibit the sale of intoxicating cannabinoids outside of the regulated cannabis market and creating a unified regulatory framework for all plants grown for their cannabinoid content .
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