Hemp-derived cannabinoids are making waves across the country, but hemp’s legal status varies state by state. Is Delta-8-THC legal in New Jersey, or is the mildly-psychoactive hemp cannabinoid out of reach for residents of The Garden State?
Thankfully, delta-8-THC is legal in New Jersey, and you may be able to easily access it in stores and online.
Before you buy, here’s what you need to know about New Jersey Delta-8 laws:
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
New Jersey Delta-8-THC Laws
Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in New Jersey?
Delta-8-THC Possession Limits in New Jersey
Is Delta-9-THC Legal in New Jersey?
Where to Buy Delta-8 in New Jersey
Do You Have to Be 21 to Buy Delta-8?
Is Delta-8 Legal in All 50 States?
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.
When New Jersey legalized hemp, they also legalized CBD and other hemp-derivatives. In fact, the state’s definition fully aligns with the federal definition for hemp.
The state defines hemp as “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 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”
The legislative text goes further to declare that hemp-derived cannabinoids are considered agricultural commodities and are not considered controlled substances.
Thanks to the New Jersey Hemp Program rules and regulations, Delta-8-THC is legal in New Jersey. Similar laws have been used to legalize Delta-8 in some neighboring states, like Pennsylvania and New York. The local hemp market may include a mix of products from states that may not be very well regulated.
Here’s some snippets from New Jersey state law:
“Cannabis” means a genus of flowering plants in the family Cannabaceae of which Cannabis sativa is a species, and Cannabis indica and Cannabis ruderalis are subspecies thereof. Cannabis refers to any form of the plant in which the delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration on a dryweight basis has not yet been determined.
“CBD” or “cannabidiol” is a phytocannabinoid found in cannabis which does not produce psychoactive effects in users.
“Federally defined THC level for hemp” or “acceptable hemp THC level” means a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis for hemp or in a hemp product. Hemp will satisfy the standard of “federally defined THC level for hemp” or “acceptable hemp THC level” if laboratory testing confirms a result within a measurement of the uncertainty that includes the THC concentration level of 0.3 percent. For example, if the reported delta-9 THC content concentration in a sample is 0.35%, and the measurement of uncertainty is +/- 0.099%, the hemp would be compliant, because 0.3% falls within the distribution range between .251% and .449%.
“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 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis. Hemp and hemp-derived cannabinoids, including cannabidiol, shall be considered an agricultural commodity and not a controlled substance due to the presence of hemp or hemp-derived cannabinoids.
“Hemp Extract” means oil chemically extracted from hemp’s aerial plant part, such as seeds, stalks or flowers, using chemical processes, containing a natural blend of phytocannabinoids, and includes cannabidiol, or “CBD” oil.
“Hemp product” means a finished product with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent that is derived from or made by processing a hemp plant or plant part and prepared in a form available for commercial sale. The term includes cosmetics, personal care products, food intended for human or animal consumption, cloth, cordage, fiber, fuel, paint, paper, particleboard, plastics, and any product containing one or more hemp-derived cannabinoids such as cannabidiol. Hemp products shall not be considered controlled substances due to the presence of hemp or hemp-derived cannabinoids.
“THC” means delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which is a psychoactive component in cannabis plants.
The New Jersey Hemp Program declares that “hemp and hemp-derived cannabinoids, including cannabidiol, shall be considered an agricultural commodity and not a controlled substance due to the presence of hemp or hemp-derived cannabinoids.”
Because the state’s definition of hemp includes all cannabinoids, extracts, isomers, and other derivatives, Delta-8-THC is not to be considered a controlled substance in New Jersey.
New Jersey law does not define any possession limits for hemp-derived products, including 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.
Yes! Voters approved Question 1 on the 2020 General Election Ballot, paving the way for the legalization of recreational cannabis in 2021. The state has allowed cannabis access for qualifying patients since the Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act became law in 2010.
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. If you’re looking to buy Delta-8-THC in New Jersey, you may be in luck!
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.
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.
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 New Jersey according to state law, but you should read more about Delta-8 laws by state to determine the legality in other areas.
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