Delta-9 THC is the main psychoactive isomer of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in Cannabis sativa plants. The two prominent Cannabis sativa strains from which Delta-9 THC is derived are marijuana and industrial hemp. Delta-9 THC is usually sold in formulations such as edibles, oils, powders, capsules, smokables, and topicals. Its use is often associated with side effects such as dry mouth, dizziness, hallucination, increased heart rate, impaired concentration and memory, increased risk of heart attack, and paranoia. These adverse effects are mostly experienced when users consume Delta-9 THC products in large amounts. When taken in moderate doses, Delta-9 THC produces a feeling of relaxation that can help improve sleep. Also, Delta-9 THC is beneficial in treating glaucoma, muscle spasms, severe pain, nausea caused by cancer treatment, Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and seizures.
Yes, Delta-9 THC is legal under Chapter 18K of the Minnesota Statutes. As stipulated in this law, Delta-9 THC products sourced from industrial hemp may be sold in Minnesota, provided their THC concentrations do not exceed 0.3%. THC products are available online and in retail stores in various formulations such as gummies, topicals, smokables, oils, capsules, powders, tablets, and vapes. According to Section 18K.03 of the Minnesota Statutes, residents can purchase hemp-sourced THC products from other states and bring them into Minnesota. Hemp products became legal for interstate movement after the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (the U.S. 2018 Farm Bill) was signed into federal law. However, it is illegal to bring cannabis-sourced Delta-9 THC products into Minnesota because marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance in the United States.
Although cannabis-sourced THC products cannot be shipped into Minnesota, the state allows registered medical marijuana patients to use cannabis-sourced Delta-9 THC products for medical purposes. In May 2014, Minnesota legalized medical marijuana for treating severe medical conditions. Initially, the state did not allow medical marijuana patients access to smokable Delta-9 THC products. Patients could only consume Delta-9 THC in liquid formulations, pills, and vaporizable forms. In 2021, the Minnesota Legislature expanded Section 152.22, subdivision 6 of the Minnesota Statutes, allowing marijuana patients to smoke Delta-9 THC directly from dried raw cannabis plants.
Per Minnesota’s medical cannabis program, codified between Sections 152.22 and 152.37 of the Minnesota Statutes, patients must be diagnosed with specific medical conditions by qualified physicians to qualify for cannabis-sourced THC. Medical marijuana dispensaries sell cannabis-derived Delta-9 THC in various formulations such as powders and concentrated oils.
Delta-8 THC is an isomer of Delta-9 THC. Although Delta-8 THC is psychoactive, it is less potent than Delta-9 THC. Therefore, it takes a larger dose of Delta-8 THC to achieve the ‘’high’’ of Delta-9 THC. Some cannabinoid users prefer Delta-8 THC to Delta-9 THC because Delta-8 THC is milder. Delta-8 THC users do not usually experience the pronounced motor skill impairment, anxiety, paranoid delusions, or mental fog sometimes experienced after Delta-9 THC consumption. Also, the euphoric effects of Delta-8 THC sets in gradually, slowly easing users into a mellow state, whereas Delta-9 THC has a rapid onset.
Furthermore, Delta-9 and Delta-8 THC differ in their legality at the federal level. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized industrial hemp (Cannabis sativa plants that do not contain over 0.3% of Delta-9 THC). However, nothing within the 2018 Farm Bill prohibits anyone from extracting Delta-8 THC from industrial hemp and manufacturing products with the compound. So, Delta-8 THC is considered federally legal when derived from hemp.
Delta-8 THC is usually produced by extracting cannabidiol (CBD) from hemp and then chemically converting it to Delta-8 THC. This is because Cannabis sativa plants only contain trace amounts of Delta-8 THC. On the other hand, the Delta-9 THC levels of cannabis plants are usually high, so the cannabinoid can easily be extracted and infused into products for ingestion.
Delta-10 THC is a psychoactive cannabinoid found in small amounts in the cannabis plant. When consumed, it can get a user high, but it is less potent than Delta-9 THC. Unlike Delta-9 THC, which is readily available in plants and can be easily extracted, Delta-10 THC is commonly processed from industrial hemp-derived CBD. Delta-10 THC provides an energizing effect that gives users more creativity, whereas Delta-9 THC is sedating.
Typically, drug screenings do not differentiate Delta-9 THC from Delta-8 THC or Delta-10 THC because liver enzymes break down THC molecules through the same process and drug tests detect the byproducts, THC metabolites. Delta-9 THC affects people differently, but it typically stays in the body for 3 to 12 days after ingestion. THC is usually detectable for approximately 2 days in blood plasma, 90 days in the hair, 6 weeks in urine, and 21 days in saliva. The amount of time Delta-9 THC remains detectable in the body depends on how much a user ingests, their consumption frequency, and their metabolic rate.
On June 2, 2022, Governor Tim Waltz approved House File 4065, which legalized hemp-derived Delta-9 THC edibles with a maximum THC content of 5 milligrams per serving. Therefore, Delta-9 THC gummies and other edible THC products are available for purchase online and in local retail stores in the state. As stipulated in House File 4065, each pack of gummies cannot contain over 50 milligrams of Delta-9 THC.
Registered medical marijuana patients in Minnesota may purchase cannabis-derived Delta-9 THC gummies from medical marijuana dispensaries in the state. Typically, Delta-9 THC gummies cause a similar high as smokable Delta-9 THC products. The euphoric effect of Delta-9 THC gummies takes about 30 minutes to set in, but the sensation can linger for over 6 hours, unlike the high from smokable THC products that last approximately 3 hours.