Is Delta-8 Legal in Kentucky? (2024 Update)

by Kat Austin February 19, 2021 5 min read

Is Delta-8 Legal in Kentucky? (2024 Update) - Vida Optima™

Delta-8-THC, a newly-popularized cannabinoid, is legal according to federal laws, but some states still prohibit possession. Kentucky is home to one of the nation's most organized hemp programs, but is Delta-8 legal in Kentucky?

Currently, Delta-8-THC is legal in Kentucky, and residents may be able to find it in select stores throughout the state. 

Here's how Kentucky Delta-8-THC laws break down:

Disclaimer: We’re always working to stay informed on the latest Delta-8 laws and research. However, state laws are subject to change and we advise that you do your own research to verify the information you find in this article. This is not intended as legal advice.

Delta 8 Kentucky Laws Table of Contents

Kentucky Delta-8-THC Laws
Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in Kentucky?
Delta-8-THC Possession Limits in Kentucky
Is Delta-9-THC Legal in Kentucky?
Where to Buy Delta-8 in Kentucky
Do You Have to Be 21 to Buy Delta-8?
Is Delta-8 Legal in All 50 States?
Resources

Key Takeaways

  • Delta-8 is a legal in Kentucky. 
  • Kentucky originally considered Delta-8 a Controlled Substance, but the state passed a new law in 2023 that effectively regulates the sale of Delta-8 products. 
  • Part of Kentucky's new Delta-8 laws include age limits restricting sale to anyone under 21 years old. 

Delta 8 Kentucky Laws

A close up of a federally legal hemp plant, the only kind of cannabis that's legal in Kentucky.

Kentucky quickly hopped on the opportunity to legalize hemp and CBD after the 2018 Farm Bill became federal law. The state has legalized hemp, which it defines according to the federal definition. It also legalized all hemp products "made from, or made by, processing industrial hemp…"

The state's legislation goes further to specify the difference between "marijuana" and hemp material. Kentucky permits possession of all CBD and other hemp materials, assuming the material contains no living plant material, viable seeds, or flower.

This seemingly legalized Delta-8-THC in the state so long as it was derived from legal hemp material, but the Kentucky Department of Agriculture published a letter on April 19 of 2021 to clarify their stance on Delta-8, which they declared a Controlled Substance. 

In 2023, however, Governor Andy Beshear signed executive order 2022-799 which removed Delta-8 from the controlled substances lists, set forth several regulations, and made it legal for adults 21 and older to purchase Delta-8 products in the state. 

Thanks to this new law, Delta-8 is now legal in Kentucky. 

Here's the relevant text:

KRS 260.850 TO 260.869 INDUSTRIAL HEMP

260.850 Definitions

(5) “Industrial hemp” means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds thereof and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than three-tenths of one percent (0.3%) on a dry weight basis;

(6) “Industrial hemp products” means products derived from, or made by, processing industrial hemp plants or plant parts;

40 KRS 218A.010

218A.010 Definitions for chapter.

(27) “Marijuana” means all parts of the plant Cannabis sp., whether growing or not; the seeds thereof; the resin extracted from any part of the plant; and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of the plant, its seeds or resin or any compound, mixture, or preparation which contains any quantity of these substances. The term “marijuana” does not include:

(a) Industrial hemp that is in the possession, custody, or control of a person who holds a license issued by the Department of Agriculture permitting that person to cultivate, handle, or process industrial hemp;

(b) Industrial hemp products that do not include any living plants, viable seeds, leaf materials, or floral materials;

(c) The substance cannabidiol, when transferred, dispensed, or administered pursuant to the written order of a physician practicing at a hospital or clinic affiliated with a Kentucky public university having a college or school of medicine;

(d) For persons participating in a clinical trial or in an expanded access program, a drug or substance approved for the use of those participants by the United States Food and Drug Administration;

(e) A cannabidiol product derived from industrial hemp, as defined in KRS 260.850; or

(f) A cannabidiol product approved as a prescription medication by the United States Food and Drug Administration;

Industrial hemp, the legal cannabis material used to make Delta-8.Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in Kentucky?

No, Delta-8 is not a Controlled Substance in the state of Kentucky. 

Delta 8 THC Possession Limits in Kentucky

There are no possession limits set forth for hemp THC products in Kentucky.  

Is Cannabis (Delta 9 THC) Legal in Kentucky ?

No. Kentucky does not allow high-THC cannabis for either recreational or medicinal use.

Possession of any amount of cannabis in Kentucky is considered a class B misdemeanor, punishable with a fine of up to $250 and up to 45 days in jail.

Where to Buy Delta 8 in Kentucky?

Delta-8-THC vapes, which may be legal and accessible in Kentucky

According to state hemp laws, legal hemp products can be sold in the state so long as it is produced in accordance with the state’s hemp plan. However, Delta-8 is not considered controlled substance and Delta-8 sales are therefore legal in Kentucky.  

In areas where Delta-8 is legal, including those with organized hemp programs, it’s advisable to proceed with caution when choosing a Delta-8 distributor. For many, there may be benefits to buying Delta-8 online. One reason is that you can buy directly from a brand or manufacturer, instead of purchasing through a third-party vendor that may not fully understand Delta-8 effects and uses or the laws surrounding Delta-8 products.

Is it Legal to Buy Delta-8 Online?

At Vida Optima, our Delta-8-THC products comply with all parameters of the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, so they are legal to purchase online from any state where Delta-8 is legal.

We can also help answer questions about Delta-8 before you buy, or you can read our “What is Delta-8-THC?” guide to learn everything you need to know.

Is Delta 8 Federally Legal?

Yes! Delta 8 THC is legal according to federal law because it falls under the definition of legal hemp material. Hemp and all of its derivatives, including cannabinoids, isomers, and all other extracts, were legalized via updates to the Farm Bill in 2018. Now, Delta-8 products derived from hemp that contain less than 0.3% Delta-9 are legal by federal law.

Is Delta 8 Legal in All 50 States?

Delta-8-THC is currently federally legal under the context of the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, but each state has the right to determine its own stance on tetrahydrocannabinols derived from hemp. Delta-8-THC is legal in Kentucky according to state law, but you should read more about Delta-8 laws by state to determine the legality in other areas.

FAQ: Delta-8 in Kentucky

1. Is Delta-8 THC legal in Kentucky?

As of September 27, 2023, Delta-8 THC is legal in Kentucky. The state has not imposed specific bans on Delta-8, and it follows federal guidelines that allow the sale and possession of hemp-derived products with less than 0.3% Delta-9 THC.

2. Is Delta-9 legal in Kentucky?

Yes, Delta-9 THC is legal in Kentucky if it is derived from hemp and contains no more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC on a dry weight basis, in accordance with federal law.

3. Is Delta-8 a controlled substance in KY?

No, Delta-8 THC is not considered a controlled substance in Kentucky, as long as it is derived from hemp and complies with the federal THC concentration limits.

4. What states have banned Delta-8?

Several states have banned Delta-8 THC, including Alaska, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Iowa, Montana, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.

5. Can you legally fly with Delta-8?

Yes, you can legally fly with Delta-8 THC, provided it is legal in both your departure and destination states and contains less than 0.3% Delta-9 THC. Always check TSA guidelines and local laws before traveling.

6. Can you buy Delta-8 in Kentucky?

Yes, you can buy Delta-8 THC products in Kentucky. They are available at various retailers, including CBD stores, smoke shops, and online vendors, as long as they comply with the federal THC concentration limit.

Resources

  1. “H.R.5485 - Hemp Farming Act of 2018” https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/5485
  2. “Drug Fact Sheet: K2/Spice” https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/K2-spice-2020.pdf
  3. “MARINOL” https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2006/018651s025s026lbl.pdf
  4. “260.850 Definitions for KRS 260.850 to 260.869” https://apps.legislature.ky.gov/law/statutes/statute.aspx?id=49786
  5. “218A.010 Definitions for chapter’ https://apps.legislature.ky.gov/law/statutes/statute.aspx?id=50105
  6. “Class B and Level Two Misdemeanors” https://www.criminaldefenselawyer.com/resources/criminal-defense/criminal-offense/class-b-misdemeanor.htm


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