February 20, 2021 8 min read

Hemp is legal across the country, but many states disagree on how certain hemp-derivatives should be regulated. Is Delta-8-THC legal in New Mexico? And if so, where can you find it?

Thankfully, New Mexico defines hemp similarly to the federal definition, which protects hemp derivatives like Delta-8-THC. Plus, the state specifically omits hemp derived products from their Controlled Substances Act.

In short, Delta-8-THC is legal in New Mexico.

Here’s what else you need to know about New Mexico 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 Mexico Delta-8-THC Laws
Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in New Mexico?
Delta-8-THC Possession Limits in New Mexico
Is Delta-9-THC Legal in New Mexico?
Where to Buy Delta-8 in New Mexico
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.
  • New Mexico has legalized hemp and all hemp derivatives, and has removed hemp products from their Controlled Substances Act. When Delta-8-THC is derived from hemp, it is legal 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 may be able to find it at a limited number of stores in New Mexico, 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 budding hemp flowers, the federally legal source of cannabinoids like Delta-8-THC.

New Mexico Delta 8 THC Laws

New Mexico has updated legislation to match federal hemp laws, legalizing CBD and all other hemp-derivatives. The state defines hemp as “the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including 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 three-tenths percent on a dry weight basis.”

The state also updated their Controlled Substances Act to make a specific exception for hemp derived products where “tetrahydrocannabinols” are listed as Schedule I substances.

That means that Delta-8-THC, a naturally occurring hemp derivative, is legal in the state, despite being prohibited in many neighboring states, including Colorado, Arizona, and Utah.

Here are some highlights from the official text:

HEMP FINAL RULE – 20.10.2 NMAC HEMP EXTRACTION, PRODUCTION, TRANSPORTATION, WAREHOUSING, AND TESTING

20.10.2.7 DEFINITIONS

  1. “Cannabis sativa L.” means the plant cannabis sativa L. and any part of the plant, whether growing or not.
  2. “CBD” means cannabidiol and is a cannabinoid and the primary non-psychoactive ingredient found in hemp.
  3. “Hemp” means the plant cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including seeds and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts and salts of isomers, whether growing or not, with a THC concentration of not more than three-tenths percent on a dry weight basis.
  4. “Hemp-derived material” means any material containing THC in any concentration derived from cannabis sativa L. through any activity authorized pursuant to the act.
  5. “Hemp extract” means oil and extracts, including cannabidiol, cannabidiolic acid, and other identified and non-identified compounds derived from hemp.
  6. “Hemp finished product” means a hemp product that is intended for retail sale and containing hemp or hemp extracts for human consumption, absorption, or inhalation that has a THC concentration of not more than three-tenths of one percent (0.30%).
  7. “Hemp products” means hemp, hemp-derived material, hemp extract, and hemp finished product.
  8. “THC” means delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (CAS number 1972-08-3) as measured using a postdecarboxylation method and based on percentage dry weight.

Chapter 84

30-31-2. DEFINITIONS. As used in the Controlled Substances Act:

  1. “hemp” means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including 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 three-tenths percent on a dry weight basis;

“30-31-6. SCHEDULE I. The following controlled substances are included in Schedule I:

  1. the enumeration of marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinol as Schedule I controlled substances does not apply to:

(1) hemp pursuant to rules promulgated by the board of regents of New Mexico state university on behalf of the New Mexico department of agriculture;

(2) cultivation of hemp by persons pursuant to rules promulgated by the board of regents of New Mexico state university on behalf of the New Mexico department of agriculture;

(3) tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinols, including tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinols with concentrations of up to five percent as measured using a post-decarboxylation method and based on percentage dry weight, possessed by a person in connection with the cultivation, transportation, testing, researching, manufacturing or other processing of the plant Cannabis sativa L., or any part of the plant whether growing or not, if authorized pursuant to rules promulgated, pursuant to the Hemp Manufacturing Act, by the board of regents of New Mexico state university on behalf of the New Mexico department of agriculture or the department of environment;

(4) tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinols, including tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinols in any concentration possessed by a person in connection with the extraction of tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinols, if authorized pursuant to rules promulgated, pursuant to the Hemp Manufacturing Act, by the board of regents of New Mexico state university on behalf of the New Mexico department of agriculture or the department of environment;

(5) the use of marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinols or chemical derivatives of tetrahydrocannabinol by certified patients pursuant to the Controlled Substances Therapeutic Research Act or by qualified patients pursuant to the provisions of the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act; or

(6) the use, dispensing, possession, prescribing, storage or transport of a prescription drug that the United States food and drug administration has approved and that contains marijuana, a tetrahydrocannabinol derivative or a chemical derivative of tetrahydrocannabinol;

Is Delta-8 a Controlled Substance in New Mexico?

New Mexico law specifically states that the terms for Schedule I Controlled Substances do not apply to hemp when grown and manufactured according to the state’s hemp plan. Delta-8 falls under the state’s legal definition for hemp.

That means that Delta-8-THC derived from legal hemp material is not a Controlled Substance in New Mexico.

Delta 8 THC Possession Limits in New Mexico

New Mexico 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.

Is Cannabis (Delta 9 THC) Legal in New Mexico?

New Mexico passed SB 523 in 2007 to officially legalize cannabis for medicinal use. Qualifying patients can access cannabis through state licensed dispensaries after obtaining a state-issued medical marijuana card.

High-THC cannabis is prohibited for any other use so recreational cannabis is not legal in New Mexico.

Unauthorized possession of cannabis in New Mexico is illegal, but it has mostly been decriminalized. Possession of up to a half ounce of cannabis may result in a $50 fine, while larger amounts and additional offenses may result in harsher punishments.

Where to Buy Delta 8 in New Mexico?

Delta-8-THC vaporizers, a legal type of product found in New Mexico stores and online

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 Mexico, 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.

Do You Have to Be 21 to Buy Delta 8 in New Mexico?

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 New Mexico 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. “HEMP FINAL RULE – 20.10.2 NMAC HEMP EXTRACTION, PRODUCTION, TRANSPORTATION, WAREHOUSING, AND TESTING” https://www.env.nm.gov/hempprogram/wp-content/uploads/sites/13/2019/07/20.10.2-NMAC-Official-Version.pdf
  5. “HB 581” https://www.nmlegis.gov/Sessions/19%20Regular/final/HB0581.pdf
  6. “SB 323” https://www.nmlegis.gov/Sessions/19%20Regular/final/SB0323.pdf

 


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