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The DEA Declares Delta-8 THC Synthesized from CBD Federally Illegal: Implications for the Market, Vaping Risks, and Product Regulation

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In a letter written by Terrence Boos, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Drug & Chemical Evaluation Section Chief, it has been revealed that the DEA considers delta-8 THC, when synthesized from CBD, to be federally illegal. This letter was brought to light by attorney Shane Pennington through his “On Drugs” Substack.[0] The implications of this declaration are significant, as the majority of consumer delta-8 products are derived from hemp-derived CBD.

Delta-8 THC is a cannabinoid that can naturally occur in cannabis plants, although only in trace amounts.[1] These trace amounts would be legal if extracted directly from the plant. However, the delta-8 THC found in most consumer products is synthesized from hemp-derived CBD. The DEA has stated that it considers synthetically produced cannabinoids, including delta-8 THC, to be illegal. Despite this, the market for such products has thrived with limited enforcement, and several states have taken independent measures to ban or restrict these substances.

The risks associated with vaping CBD or cannabis, whether it be in the form of wax or active cannabis, are being increasingly recognized. Dr. Diane Tanaka, the medical director of the Teenage and Young Adult Health Center at Children's Hospital Los Angeles, emphasizes that young people often underestimate these risks. Vaping CBD has become a popular trend, especially among students using electronic cigarettes. According to the 2022 National Youth Tobacco Survey, more than one in five students who use electronic cigarettes reported vaping CBD.[2] However, many of these students are unaware of the potential dangers associated with it.

Concerns about the quality and regulation of CBD-containing consumer products have also been raised. A study revealed that 92% of CBD products contain less CBD than advertised, with only 8% having concentrations within 10% of the advertised strength.[3] This discrepancy in advertised versus actual CBD concentrations could be due to poor manufacturing standards or degradation of CBD in consumer products. This highlights the need for improved regulation of CBD products to ensure their quality and safety.

Wendy McMahon has been named the president and CEO of CBS News, the network's local TV stations, and CBS Media Ventures. McMahon, who joined the company in 2021, was seen as a likely successor to Neeraj Khemlani, the former co-president of CBS News and stations.[4] McMahon will now oversee CBS News' broadcast and streaming operations, local TV stations, local news streaming channels, syndication programming, content licensing, and national advertising sales business.

In conclusion, the DEA's declaration that delta-8 THC synthesized from CBD is federally illegal has significant implications for the market and regulation of these products. The risks associated with vaping CBD, particularly among young people, are becoming more recognized. Additionally, concerns about the quality and regulation of CBD-containing consumer products highlight the need for improved standards in the industry. With Wendy McMahon taking over as president and CEO of CBS News, there may be changes and developments in the media landscape as well. Overall, these recent revelations and developments underscore the ongoing discussions and debates surrounding CBD and its derivatives.

0. “Delta-8 THC Derived from CBD is Illegal, According to DEA Email …”, 19 Aug. 2023,

1. “DEA Considers Delta-8 THC Products Federally Illegal When …”, 19 Aug. 2023,

2. “CBD Vapes Rising in Popularity Among Teens | Health | keysnews …”, 19 Aug. 2023,

3. “CBD manufacturers have a responsibility to label products correctly …”, 19 Aug. 2023,

4. “CBS announces Wendy McMahon to lead news in wake of Neeraj …”, 19 Aug. 2023,

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