Is Delta-8 THC Legal in Illinois?

By | last updated April 11, 2023

Evidence Based 5

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Although Illinois may pass legislation requiring delta 8 and CBD products to be independently tested and properly labeled, delta-8 THC is fully legal. Here’s a look at the Prairie State’s delta 8 laws and how they might change in the future.

Summary

Delta-8 THC is legal in Illinois. The state is also working on legislation that will require proper labeling and testing for delta 8 and CBD products.


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Illinois Delta-8 THC Laws

Illinois legalized recreational cannabis in 2020 so it’s not surprising that the state has delta 8-friendly laws. 

Lawmakers are also working on new legislation called the CBD Safety Act which will require cannabinoid products like CBD and delta-8 THC to be independently tested and properly labeled before they can be sold in Illinois.

That’s great news because the delta-8 THC market is full of shady companies selling subpar, potentially unsafe products.

Although the bill didn’t pass in 2021 and is stuck in the Senate as of January 2023, it’s likely to pass in the near future.

When it does, it will arguably make Illinois the best place to buy delta-8 THC since it will be regulated similar to adult-use cannabis but without requiring you to buy it from licensed stores. 

What is Delta-8 THC?

Delta-8-THC (Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol) is a form of THC, the cannabis compound that gets you high. It’s slightly different from delta-9 THC, the most common form of this psychoactive substance.

Delta 8 is less potent than its cousin (1). It’s also found in much smaller quantities in cannabis plants, so it’s usually made chemically from CBD, a hemp-derived cannabinoid. 

Why Delta-8 THC is Federally Legal

Delta-8 THC is legal on the national level because of a loophole in the 2018 Farm Bill. The bill defines hemp and hemp products as cannabis with no more than 0.3% delta-9 THC.

That means delta 8 products made from hemp are legal as long as they meet that delta-9 limit. As it happens, all of the delta-8 THC products sold on the market are derived from CBD, the most abundant cannabinoid in hemp.

States Where Delta-8 THC is Illegal

States can regulate delta-8 THC in any way they see fit.

Delta-8 THC is currently illegal in 18 states: Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia.

The Future of Delta 8 in Illinois

Illinois is arguably the most delta-8 friendly state in the country. Delta-8 THC is legal and the only possible change is increased testing and labeling requirements.

That will only benefit delta-8 users by virtually eliminating fake and potentially unsafe products from the market.

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