February 19, 2021 7 min read

Delta-8-THC, a mildly psychoactive hemp derivative, is popping up all over the U.S., but it's legality is confusing. It seems to be legal by federal law, but is Delta-8-THC legal in Maine?

Thankfully, yes! Maine's hemp legislation protects all hemp derivatives, including cannabinoids, extracts, and isomers. It also allows for the possession and sale of consumable hemp products, like foods or vaporizers.

Take a look at Maine's Delta-8-THC laws to learn more:

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.

Table of Contents
Delta-8-THC and Federal Laws
Maine Delta-8-THC Laws
Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in Maine?
Delta-8-THC Possession Limits in Maine
Is Delta-9-THC Legal in Maine?
Where to Buy Delta-8 in Maine
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 cannabinoid derived from legal hemp, and is therefore legal according to federal legislation.
  • Maine has legalized all hemp derivatives, including Delta-8-THC, even in consumable forms. The state also passed legislation to clarify the difference between hemp products and marijuana, making Delta-8 incredibly accessible in the state.
  • To ensure that the Delta-8 you purchase is legal, you have to ensure that it is made from legal hemp by a licensed grower.
  • You generally need to be at least 21 years old to purchase Delta-8-THC products made from hemp. You can find it at a limited number of stores in Maine, but you can also buy legal Delta-8 online and have it shipped directly to your door.

Delta 8 THC and Federal Laws

Delta 8's federal status is confusing at first glance. Technically, Delta-8-THC has been listed as a Schedule I substance alongside Delta-9-THC for well over a decade.

More recently, however, the Hemp Farming Act of 2018 was signed into law. Under this legislation, hemp containing less than 0.3% Delta-9-THC became legal, as did any cannabinoids, extracts, or isomers derived from the legal hemp material.

In fact, Section 12619b of the 2018 Hemp Farming Act specifically addresses tetrahydrocannabinols in hemp. By extension of this new law, Delta-8-THC was legal, or so it seemed.

Here's the catch:

Most of the legal Delta-8 products on the market are made by "synthesizing" CBD. While federal hemp legislation currently allows the production and sale of naturally derived cannabinoids, it specifically prohibits all synthesized cannabinoids.

So where does this put Delta-8-THC, considering it is both a naturally occurring cannabinoid and can be synthesized from legal CBD?

To understand, you need to take a look at the method used to turn CBD into Delta 8, which is vastly different from the complex process that is generally used to create synthetic cannabinoids.

The conversion process between CBD and Delta 8 relies on a transfer of isomers, a process called isomerization, between the two cannabinoids. This means that Delta-8-THC technically exists as a hemp "isomer," which is covered by hemp's legal definition according to the 2018 law.

In other words, Delta-8 is made from hemp and considered to be a naturally occurring part of the hemp plant.

The types of cannabinoids that the DEA typically carve out as “synthetic” are liquid agents that are frequently applied to plant material, like K2 and Spice. Legal forms of synthetic cannabinoids, such as Marinol, also exist as prescription pharmaceuticals. Unlike Delta-8-THC, these substances are purely synthetic and made in a lab without the use of plant material.

Of course, laws regarding cannabinoids are still subject to change as hemp regulations are ironed out by both the DEA and FDA. For now, Delta 8 maintains a federally legal status, but state laws still may pose limitations on Delta-8-THC access.

Two hemp flowers, the federally legal source of most Delta-8 products.

Maine Delta 8 THC Laws

Maine has updated hemp legislation to legalize hemp and CBD in response to the 2018 Farm Bill. Thankfully, the state's definition is a bit more in depth than federal legislation.

In Maine, the definition for hemp includes all Cannabis Sativa material with less than 0.3% Delta-9-THC, including all extracts and derivatives. "Hemp" also means all products derived from hemp material, including "topical or ingestible consumer products, including food, food additives and food products derived from hemp, which in their final forms contain a delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3%..."

Maine also updated their definition for "marijuana" as defined in the Controlled Substances Act to specify that "marijuana product” does not include...a product containing hemp."

Similar legislation is used in nearby states, like New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts, but the local market may not be well regulated yet.

Here are some relevant snippets from the state’s legislation:

TITLE 7: AGRICULTURE AND ANIMALS. PART 5: PLANT INDUSTRY. CHAPTER 406-A: HEMP

  • 2231. Industrial hemp
  1. Definition.
  2. “Hemp” means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds 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 0.3% on a dry weight basis, or as otherwise defined in federal law. “Hemp” includes agricultural commodities and products derived from hemp and topical or ingestible consumer products, including food, food additives and food products derived from hemp, which in their final forms contain a delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3% or as otherwise defined in federal law. “Hemp” does not include marijuana for medical use pursuant to Title 22, chapter 558‑C or adult-use marijuana pursuant to Title 28‑B, chapter 1. [PL 2019, c. 528, §1 (NEW).]

Title 22: HEALTH AND WELFARE. Subtitle 2: HEALTH. Part 5: FOODS AND DRUGS. Chapter 558-C: MAINE MEDICAL USE OF MARIJUANA ACT

  • 2422. Definitions

4-L. Marijuana product. “Marijuana product” means a product composed of harvested marijuana and other ingredients that is intended for medical use. “Marijuana product” includes, but is not limited to, an edible marijuana product, a marijuana ointment and a marijuana tincture. “Marijuana product” does not include marijuana concentrate or a product containing hemp as defined in Title 7, section 2231, subsection 1‑A, paragraph D.

[PL 2019, c. 528, §15 (AMD).]

Title 28-B: ADULT USE MARIJUANA. Chapter 1: MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION ACT. Subchapter 1: GENERAL PROVISIONS

  • 102. Definitions
  1. Marijuana. “Marijuana” means the leaves, stems, flowers and seeds of a marijuana plant, whether growing or not. “Marijuana” includes marijuana concentrate but does not include hemp as defined in Title 7, section 2231, subsection 1‑A, paragraph D or a marijuana product.

[PL 2019, c. 528, §18 (AMD).]

  1. Marijuana concentrate. “Marijuana concentrate” means the resin extracted from any part of a marijuana plant and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture or preparation from such resin, including, but not limited to, hashish. “Marijuana concentrate” does not include resin extracted from hemp as defined in Title 7, section 2231, subsection 1‑A, paragraph D. In determining the weight of marijuana concentrate in a marijuana product, the weight of any other ingredient combined with marijuana or marijuana concentrate to prepare the marijuana product may not be included.

[PL 2019, c. 528, §19 (AMD).]

Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in Maine?

No. Maine’s legislation specifically clarifies the difference in “marijuana” and hemp derived cannabinoids. In any case, cannabis is also not illegal in the state, but is still subject to strict state laws and must be purchased through a state licensed dispensary.

Thanks to the state’s clarification of hemp as a unique product, hemp derived cannabinoids like Delta-8-THC are not classified as Controlled Substances in Maine.

Delta 8 THC Possession Limits in Maine

Maine does not define any possession limits for hemp material, like Delta-8-THC.

Still, Delta-8 could be easily confused for Delta-9 THC by authorities without proper documentation and lab testing.

Basic lab testing checks only for tetrahydrocannabinol, meaning that extensive lab tests are needed to differentiate between Delta-8 content and Delta-9 content when proof of legal possession is needed.

Is Cannabis (Delta 9 THC) Legal in Maine?

Yes. Maine passed the Maine Medical Marijuana Act in 2009, which made medical cannabis accessible to patients with certain qualifying conditions. Later in 2016, Maine legalized Adult Use cannabis by popular vote on the public election ballot.

Cannabis can be legally purchased and possessed by adults who are 21 or older or qualifying patients with a Maine Medical Marijuana card, but cannabis is subject to different possession limits than hemp.

Where to Buy Delta 8 in Maine?

A selection of Delta-8 vapes, which are sold in stores and online in areas where Delta-8 is legal.

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. That means you’re in luck if you’re looking to buy Delta-8-THC in Maine.

Still, it’s advisable to proceed with caution when choosing a Delta-8 distributor. While you can likely find various hemp products in local stores, 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.

At Bloom Society, our Delta-8-THC products comply with all parameters of the Hemp Farming Act of 2018. 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.

Do You Have to Be 21 to Buy Delta-8 in Maine?

There are no state regulations that place age restriction on the purchase of hemp-derived products. Retailers have the right to determine age limits for the purchase of Delta-8 products, but many retailers require consumers to be at least 21 years of age.

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 their own stance on tetrahydrocannabinols derived from hemp. Delta-8-THC is legal in Maine according to state law, but you should read more about Delta-8 laws by state to determine the legality in other areas.

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. “Title 7: AGRICULTURE AND ANIMALS, Part 5: PLANT INDUSTRY, Chapter 406-A: HEMP” https://legislature.maine.gov/statutes/7/title7sec2231.html
  5. “An Act To Establish the Maine Medical Marijuana Act” http://www.mainelegislature.org/legis/bills/bills_124th/billpdfs/IB000201.pdf
  6. “An Act To Implement a Regulatory Structure for Adult Use Marijuana” https://legislature.maine.gov/LawMakerWeb/summary.asp?ID=280067229

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