As of 2022, 19 states have legalized marijuana for recreational use.
But you should still be cautious about the type of cannabis you decide to buy in certain states. If you’re wondering “is Delta 8 legal in New York,” read more to find out what you need to know about its usage and legal standpoint in the Empire State.
The History of Cannabis Legislation in New York
The legalization of cannabis has been widely contested throughout the country. And although New York is seen as a more liberal state, it’s not been an easy battle to have it legalized.
It was previously legal for medicinal use only before 1914 but outlawed from 1927 to 2014, until it was legalized again for specific medical use.
In 2013, Senator Liz Krueger and the Majority Leader of the New York State Assembly Crystal Peoples-Stokes proposed a bill, the Marijuana Regulation & Taxation Act(MRTA). It sought to reinvent policies on marijuana in the state. But it was met with continuous opposition each time it was brought to session over the years.
Things changed when the 2018 Farm Bill redefined hemp as legal and distinct from other cannabis plants. This made hemp technically legal, or rather in a limbo state of legality, in New York.
Later the same year, Former Governor Cuomo expressed interest in a study of the effects of legalization for recreational usage within the state. The New York Department of Health followed through and found that the pros far outweighed the cons.
The next year in 2019, Cuomo signed a bill designed to compromise on some aspects of the MRTA. These compromises mainly regarded decriminalization and expunging prior convictions for possession.
Still after more debate, in 2021 the state legislature had two bills on its hands. One, the MRTA, and the other, Cuomo’s own proposal, the Cannabis Regulation & Taxation Act(CRTA). There were multiple differences between the two, such as the implementation of taxes and regulations on home cultivation.
But in March of 2021, the MRTA was finally passed. Under this law, the use and possession of up to 24 ounces of concentrated cannabis and three ounces of cannabis are legal for adults 21 and older.
So, Is Delta 8 Legal in New York?
Having gone over the history of the legislation, it’s important to talk about the regulations and restrictions of the MRTA. There’s conflicting information on the legality of Delta 8 THC in New York as it was previously considered a loophole in the legislation.
But as of 2022, Delta 8 is not considered legal.
In essence, the law makes a distinction between cannabinoid hemp, such as CBD, and other cannabinoids. Hemp doesn’t contain more than 0.3% THC, and others that contain more than that amount of THC are illegal. This also includes synthetic cannabinoids produced through isomerization, such as Delta 8.
The primary reason for this ban is the lack of regulations surrounding Delta 8’s production. Since Delta 8 isn’t considered eligible for the New York State Cannabinoid Hemp Program, it’s not regulated by the government or any other authoritative body such as the Office of Cannabis Management.
So if you’re wondering how to buy Delta 8 in New York, you’re out of luck. If you buy Delta 8 within the state, you’ll be putting yourself at risk in more ways than one. Many convenience stores, gas stations, and individuals may still sell it, but these likely won’t be high-quality.
These distributors often don’t perform quality checks or due diligence on the products. So, there’s no guarantee that the products are independently tested, which means that you may be buying something potentially harmful to your health.
There are also regulations on smokable hemp. Hemp cigarettes as well as full hemp flowers marketed for smoking purposes are outlawed.
However, selling flowers in bulk without labeling them for smoking use is legal. It’s also illegal to have open containers of cannabis or use it in any way in a vehicle, whether it’s parked or not.
The ban on Delta 8 also extends to Delta 10, as it’s similarly produced through isomerization. And traveling across state lines with Delta 8, or any other cannabinoid, is illegal including medical marijuana.
If you vape, the restrictions are fairly similar to those regarding tobacco products. This means that you may vape in an owned private residence or outside, but not in private businesses or on federal property. In addition, rental companies and private owners can still ban cannabis use on their property, along with employers.
Even though residents of New York aren’t able to manufacture or buy Delta 8 products, they still have options if they want to use other cannabinoids. CBD is completely legal for adult usage and can be purchased from state-licensed dispensaries and distributors. This includes tinctures, balms, lotions, and food and beverage products, among other forms.
Another example is Delta 9, which, if it contains less than 0.3 % THC, is legal to use and possess.
Other hemp-derived cannabinoids, such as cannabichromene (CBC) and cannabigerol (CBG), are also legal. These are some lesser-known alternatives to Delta 8 and have similar effects to CBD. But some organizations are still pushing for Delta 8 and other THC products to be legal in New York, so there may be a way to buy them legally at some point.
The State of Delta 8 in New York
Unfortunately the answer to “is Delta 8 legal in New York?” is no. But there are still plenty of options to responsibly use cannabis within the state. If you’re looking to take advantage of the legalization of cannabinoids in New York, one of the best ways to do so is by buying through SW Distro.
All of our products are high-quality, independently tested products that are manufactured in-house. Browse our catalog of CBD products today and find one that suits your needs.