Is Delta-8 THC Legal in Oregon? (July 2022)

By | last updated July 5, 2022

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Delta 8 is illegal in Oregon. Starting on July 1, 2022, all “artificially derived cannabinoids” like delta-8, delta-10, and THC-O are banned. Even non-intoxicating CBN products can no longer be sold.

Here’s a closer look at why delta 8 is illegal in the Beaver State.


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Oregon Delta-8 THC Laws

Oregon allows recreational marijuana and was also the first state to decriminalize small quantities of drugs in February 2021.

As such, you may be surprised to hear that it decided to outlaw all “artificially derived cannabinoids”, including delta-8 THC, delta-10 THC, THC-O, and even CBN, a popular non-intoxicating cannabinoid that’s usually made from other cannabinoids through a chemical conversion.

According to HB 3000, which was passed on July 19, 2021:

(3) (a) “Artificially derived cannabinoid” means a chemical substance that is created by a chemical reaction that changes the molecular structure of any chemical substance derived from the plant Cannabis family Cannabaceae.

(b) “Artificially derived cannabinoid” does not include:

(A) A naturally occurring chemical substance that is separated from the plant Cannabis family Cannabaceae by a chemical or mechanical extraction process;

(B) Cannabinoids that are produced by decarboxylation from a naturally occurring cannabinoid acid without the use of a chemical catalyst; or

(C) Any other chemical substance identified by the commission, in consultation with the authority and the department, by rule.

Oregon HB 3000

Delta 8 fits this definition of an artificially-derived cannabinoid because it’s not extracted directly from hemp but instead made by converting pure CBD into THC. Beginning on July 1, 2022, delta-8 and other cannabinoids that meet the definition are illegal.

The only exception to the ban is edible CBN products like CBN gummies, which are typically used for sleep, and can be sold up to July 1, 2023.

According to Oregon’s Liquor and Cannabis Commission, the reason for the ban was the difficulty of testing artificial cannabinoid products for safety. In an interview with the Oregonian, the Commission’s hemp and processing compliance specialist Steven Crowley explained that:

We have testing for pesticides…We have testing for residual solvents from the extraction process. We don’t have any testing for any of the whole universe of chemical reagents that you could use to synthetically turn one cannabinoid into something else, or for any of the byproducts of that reaction.”

Steven Crowley

What is Delta-8 THC?

You’re probably familiar with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the intoxicating ingredient in marijuana. Cannabis plants contain high levels of delta-9, the most common form of THC.

Delta-8 is another form of THC. It’s not as potent as delta 9 but can still get you high (1). There’s very little of it in cannabis but manufacturers can make delta 8 from hemp-derived CBD.

Why Delta-8 THC is Federally Legal

A loophole in the 2018 Farm Bill is responsible for making delta 8 legal nationwide. The bill legalized hemp products, defining them as cannabis with no more than 0.3% delta-9 THC.

Since that limit doesn’t say anything about other forms of THC, hemp-derived delta 8 products are legal.

Hemp manufacturers typically make delta-8 THC from the CBD isolated from hemp with a special chemical process.

States Where Delta-8 THC is Illegal

Each state can decide to regulate delta-8 THC in its own way.

Delta-8 THC is currently illegal in 14 states: Alaska, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Montana, New York, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Utah, and Washington.

The Future of Delta 8 in Oregon

Delta 8 and indeed all other artificially-derived cannabinoids like delta-10, THC-O, and CBN are illegal in Oregon.

The only change is that from July 2023, licensed marijuana dispensaries will be able to sell hemp-derived edible products as long as they can get GRAS (“Generally recognized as safe”) approval from the FDA.

Unfortunately, doing this is nearly impossible as the FDA has only approved one hemp-derived product to date: the pharmaceutical, CBD-only drug called Epidiolex, which is used to treat epileptic seizures.

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