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What is Delta-8?

Delta-8 are the hottest “new” products flying off the shelves. Learn what Delta-8 is, why it’s so popular, and how to improve your Delta-8 products.


Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably already heard about Delta-8. Its popularity has exploded over the last year and it doesn’t look like consumer hype will die down any time soon. 

Technically, delta-8 isn’t new. It’s one of the hundreds of cannabinoids naturally present in both cannabis and hemp. Plus, because it can be extracted from industrial hemp, it’s legal in some states where Delta-9 products are not permitted. 

So, what exactly is Delta-8 and what can you do to create the best delta-8 products on the market? Keep reading because we’ve got answers.

Reading Time - 7 min


What is Delta-8 THC?

Need the short and sweet version? Here’s a summary of what we’re covering today:

  • ∆8-tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta-8 THC or just Delta-8 for short) is found in varying amounts in both cannabis and hemp. Its chemical structure is similar to that of Delta-9, which is why it also has psychoactive properties.
  • However, it’s important to remember that the psychoactive properties of delta-8 are nowhere near as potent as delta-9. The double bond placement in their chemical structures is different, meaning delta-8 doesn’t bind with endocannabinoid receptors the same way.
  • In general, people using Delta-8 products report a high that’s relatively clear-headed, relaxing, and overall reasonably mild. Additionally, consumers who find Delta-9 too intense are often reaching for Delta-8 products as a milder alternative.
  • Technically, under the 2018 Farm Bill, industrial hemp is legal. Delta-8 extracted from industrial hemp should be federally legal, but there have been some discrepancies between state and federal laws. Our advice? Double-check the rules in your state and keep your eyes peeled for updates.
  • To create delta-8 products that stand out, we recommend focusing on safe, high-quality products that give consumers flavors and effects they can’t get elsewhere.
  • If you’re completing the delta-8 extraction in-house, make sure you use the best plant matter available. Similarly, if you’re purchasing delta-8 from a manufacturer to be used in your products, be just as critical. 
  • When you have lab results (both in-house and third-party) that illustrate the safety and potency of your products, make that information readily available. 
  • Infuse delta-8 products with terpenes for the best aroma and flavor. If you’re looking for a classic cannabis flavor, our Native Series captures the true essence of both traditional and novel strains. Conversely, you can infuse products with Premium Flavors for classic flavors like  Mango, Red Velvet Cake, and more.
  • Infuse delta-8 products with terpenes to fine-tune their effects. Terpenes are what create novel effects like creativity, focus, relaxation, and more. If you want your products to have those effects, choose your terpenes carefully.
  • Infuse delta-8 products with terpenes to harness the entourage effect. While delta-8, delta-9, and even CBD isolates have their own effects, combining them with terpenes helps create more powerful effects. 
  • Contact us today with questions and let’s get started creating the next great delta-8 product!

 

What is Delta-8 THC?

∆8-tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta-8 THC or just Delta-8 for short) is found in varying amounts in both cannabis and hemp. That means if you’ve consumed full-spectrum products, you may have already experienced Delta-8 in minimal amounts. If that’s the case, what’s the benefit of using a product with larger quantities of Delta-8?

Its popularity as an isolate skyrocketed because of its similarity to Delta-9 THC. Their chemical structures are similar enough that Delta-8 binds with the endocannabinoid system almost the same way that Delta-9 does.  More specifically, they both have a double bond. It’s believed this double bond is responsible for Delta-9s psychoactive effects.

That’s also why delta-8 has some psychoactive properties. It’s important to remember, however, that the psychoactive properties of Delta-8 are nowhere near as potent as Delta-9. While their structures are similar, the placement of that double bond is different. That means Delta-8 won’t bind to endocannabinoid receptors in precisely the same way that Delta-9 does. 

To help illustrate that point, imagine two different vape products from the same brand. One has 1000mg of Delta-9 THC and the other has 1000mg of Delta-8 THC. If all the other product details are the same, the vape with Delta-9 THC will have more powerful and intense psychoactive effects. 

In general, people using Delta-8 products report a high that’s relatively clear-headed, relaxing, and overall fairly mild. Additionally, consumers who find Delta-9 too intense are often reaching for Delta-8 products as a milder alternative. Of course, the method of consumption and overall quality of the product also plays a significant role in user experiences. 

Is Delta-8 THC Legal?

That depends on your location. Technically, under the 2018 Farm Bill, industrial hemp is legal. The FDA’s ruling on hemp has a maximum limit for delta-9, but there is no such limit for delta-8. So, delta-8 extracted from industrial hemp should be federally legal as well. Unfortunately, there have been some discrepancies between state and federal laws.

The delta-8 drama at the CHAMPS trade show a few months ago is just one example of this. Even though delta-9 is legal both medicinally and recreationally in Nevada, recent state legislation has made delta-8 illegal there. However, delta-8 is legal in states like Kansas that haven’t yet legalized medicinal or recreational delta-9. 

Some groups are concerned about safety because of a lack of regulation for these products. Honestly, we’re all about health and safety, which is a big part of what we do at Abstrax. Unlike individuals who want to ban delta-8 products, we want to encourage safe manufacturing practices and high-quality products that have been carefully designed with safety in mind.

Our advice? Double-check the laws in your state and keep your eyes peeled for updates. We’ll keep you as up-to-date as possible, but cannabis policies are rapidly changing. 

How Can You Improve Your Delta-8 Products?

If you’re manufacturing and distributing products where delta-8 is legal, you’ll want to make sure your products stand out. That means creating safe, high-quality products that give consumers flavors and effects they can’t get elsewhere.

Assess Delta-8 Sources for Quality and Safety

This one should go without saying, but it bears repeating. If you’re completing the extraction process in-house, make sure you use the best plant matter available. Similarly, if you’re purchasing delta-8 from a manufacturer to be used in your products, be just as critical. Assess both the original plant material and the extraction methods to ensure you’re using delta-8 that’s safe and of the highest quality.

Inform Consumers About the Quality and Safety of Your Products

One of the biggest arguments against these products is a lack of data. When you have lab results (both in-house and third-party) that illustrate the safety and potency of your products, make that information readily available. When consumers feel confident your products are safe, they’re more likely to become repeat customers and recommend your products to others. 

Infuse Delta-8 Products with Terpenes for Flavor and Aroma

Consumers want products that taste and smell good. Whether you’re manufacturing distillate, edibles, vape cartridges, or beverages, terpenes can help. 

If you’re looking for a classic cannabis flavor, our Native Series captures the true essence of both traditional and novel strains. Conversely, you can infuse products with Premium Flavors like Mango, Orange Chai Latte, Red Velvet Cake, and more. 

Infuse Delta-8 Products with Terpenes and Fine-Tune Effects

Yes, great taste and smell are essential. However, when it comes to cannabis products, it’s also about how products make you feel

Hopefully, this isn’t news to you. Yes, Delta-8 or Delta-9 have psychoactive properties. But a strain’s unique terpene profile dictates novel effects like focus, creativity, relaxation, and more. So, if you want your products to have specific effects, you’ll want to select your terpenes carefully. 

Infuse Delta-8 Products with Terpenes for the Entourage Effect

The entourage effect is the phenomenon where cannabis compounds (cannabinoids, terpenes, etc.) work synergistically together to produce different and even more potent effects than they’re capable of on their own. 

Basically, while delta-8, delta-9, and even CBD isolates have their own effects, combining them with terpenes helps create unique experiences with more powerful results. 

Master the Delta-8 Market

Delta-8 is just one more example of the multifaceted nature of cannabis. If you’re just now getting into the cannabis industry because of delta-8, then welcome! If you’ve been in the industry for some time, then we’re excited for this next chapter of your business. 

Whatever the case may be, we’re here to help with updates, terpene recommendations, and even custom terpene formulations. Contact us today with questions and let’s get started creating the next great delta-8 product!

 

Tagged with: cannabis terpenes

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