You can find a lot of different types of cannabis flower on the market these days — it’s no longer just Mary Jane! In various states across the US, residents have access to delta-8 flower: a new type of bud that people are falling in love with because of its subtle properties and supportive results.
However, as something that’s only been introduced within the past few years, a lot of people have questions about where delta 8 flower comes from, how it’s made, and even whether or not it’s considered natural or synthetic.
Below, we’ve answered everything you’ll need to know about how delta-8 flower is made and so much more. But first, let’s start with the basics: what is delta-8 flower in the first place?
Table of Contents:
- What is Delta-8 Flower?
- Is Delta-8 Grown or Made?
- How is Delta-8 Flower Made?
- Is Delta-8 Flower Legal?
- Delta-8 THC Flower vs. Delta-9 THC Flower
- Is Delta-8 Flower Safe?
- How is Delta-8 Added to Flower?
- Is Delta-8 Natural or Synthetic?
- Where to Buy Your Delta-8 Flower
What is Delta-8 Flower?
You may not have heard of delta 8 flower because it was only introduced to the mainstream cannabis market a few years ago. This type of flower is actually hemp flower that has delta-8 distillate added to it.
The delta-8 cannabinoid is one that’s found in minuscule amounts within the cannabis plant. As you can tell by the name, it’s a THC variant; however, it’s quite different from delta-9 THC. Delta-8 has about half the potency that delta 9 THC does. So, it creates a more mild psychoactive experience for consumers; but, keep in mind that is still psychoactive.
This means that delta-8 flower is also mildly psychoactive. Some strains will be stronger than others depending on how they’re made and the type of distillate used to make them. Don’t worry: we’ll talk more in detail about how delta-8 flower is made in a moment.
Delta-8 flower is just as enjoyable as any other type of cannabis flower. Many consumers enjoy grinding it up and putting it in a bowl, while others prefer to buy delta 8 pre rolls for their ease and convenience. The choice is yours!
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Is Delta-8 Grown or Made?
What makes delta-8 flower significantly different from typical cannabis flower is the fact that delta-8 flower is not grown.
While the cannabinoid is naturally present in the plant, it’s present in about 1% or less of the plant. This makes it incredibly difficult to breed plants that have high delta-8 THC levels naturally. So, no, cannabis cultivators do not grow delta-8 flower. Instead, they grow hemp flower that they then go on to add delta-8 to. Technically, this means that delta-8 flower is made, not cultivated.
In the future, with some fancy cannabis science, there’s a chance that this will change and we may be able to see naturally grown D8 flower. But, for now, the delta-8 flower that you buy online or from your local shops are all made in labs across the country. Because of this, getting your hands on the COAs from the delta 8 products you buy is integral to know what’s in your flower, extract, or whatever else you’re interested in purchasing.
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How is Delta-8 Flower Made?
Now that you know what delta-8 flower is and that it’s made, and not grown, let’s talk about the most pressing question: how is delta-8 flower made?
As we’ve mentioned, delta-8 flower is technically hemp flower at the base. Curators take the hemp flower and dip or coat the flower in delta-8 THC distillate.
To make a delta 8 distillate, professionals will take hemp-derived CBD cannabinoids and transform their chemical composition through a process called isomerization. This process doesn’t require any chemical additives; instead, it simply comes down to some rearranging at the molecular level. (Simple, right?)
Once the CBD molecules have gone through this process, they’re no longer cannabidiol: they’ve officially transformed into delta-8 THC, instead.
From there, professionals can curate a delta-8 distillate, isolating the cannabinoid from all other cannabinoids and terpenes, that they can then use on their hemp flower. Many manufacturers choose to dip their flower in delta-8 extract, while here at ATLRx, we prefer to use powdered delta-8 distillate to coat our hemp flower. Then, the buds are coated in a layer of kief for an added, enhanced experience that’s hard to get from other types of flower.
Each company will have a slightly different way of producing their delta-8 flower, and this simply comes down to preference, lab space, cost, and other factors. Some flower may be coated in kief, while others may not. Generally, however, the steps will be similar to those we described earlier.
Is Delta-8 Flower Legal?
Earlier, we mentioned that delta-8 flower has mildly psychoactive properties. So, is delta-8 flower legal, or is it regulated like delta 9 THC is?
Most delta 8 products are legal under the 2018 Farm Bill. Because hemp is used to produce the cannabinoid, it contains a maximum of 0.3% THC by volume. If the product didn’t follow those regulations, it would no longer be federally legal.
Unfortunately, as is with most things in the cannabis world, delta-8 THC’s legality isn’t as straightforward as it may appear.
While the cannabinoid may be legal according to the 2018 Farm Bill, many states have begun regulating the delta-8 products on their own terms. Today, there are various places where delta-8 is banned entirely, making it illegal in the city or state. If you live in those areas, you cannot purchase, possess, or consume delta-8 products. Even if you buy the product online, there’s a good chance it isn’t going to end up making it to your doorstep.
The following states currently prohibit delta-8 THC:
Along with these states, Arizona, California, Minnesota, and Mississippi also do not have clear laws surrounding the cannabinoid, so you may not be able to get your hands on delta-8 flower in these places.
Delta-8 THC laws change all the time, so it’s important to keep up to date with the regulations in your area before making a purchase. You don’t want to try to buy a delta-8 tincture or delta 8 gummies just to learn that your state has recently banned these products.
Delta-8 THC Flower vs. Delta-9 THC Flower
Delta-8 THC and delta-9 THC may be related cannabinoids, but these two are far from the same compound.
From a technical standpoint, delta-8 and delta-9 have similar chemical structures; however, the big difference here is where the double bonding occurs on the structure itself. For the delta-9 cannabinoid, the bonding happens around, well, the ninth atom. If you couldn’t guess, it occurs around the eighth for delta-8 THC.
This difference in double-bond location on the chemical composition is what most chemists believe directly affects the potency of these cannabinoids. The delta-9 cannabinoid can simply work more closely with the CB receptors in the body than delta-8 can, making it about double as potent as delta-8.
So, potency is a huge contrast here. With delta-8 THC being about half as potent as delta-9 THC, it’s ideal for those with lower tolerances, beginners, or consumers who may have found D9 to be too powerful in the past.
That being said, you want to make sure you don’t mix up these two types of flower, as they create two totally different experiences. If you’re wanting something more subtle and soothing, delta-8 THC flower is the way to go. Delta-9 THC flower, on the other hand, will give you a more powerful, stimulating high.
In states that have legalized cannabis for medical or recreational use, you can only find high-potency delta 9 THC products (with more than 0.3% THC by quantity). In fact, that’s a big reason why so many people have turned to delta-8 flower in the first place: it’s available to consumers who otherwise wouldn’t have access to D9 products (and slightly more affordable, too). Simply put, you don’t need a medical card or to be 21 and visit a dispensary to get your hands on delta-8 products.
It’s also worth noting that delta-8 THC flower is made, while delta-9 THC flower is grown. Delta-9 flower is 100% natural and doesn’t require any chemical processes to become the flower that it is. But, while delta-9 flower may be 100% natural, you’ll have to pay much more to find strains coated in kief; this is commonplace for delta-8 flower.
Is Delta-8 Flower Safe?
Whenever you’re buying delta-8 online, whether it be delta 8 concentrates, delta-8 gummies, or a delta 8 tincture, you have to go through a few steps to ensure you’re buying high-quality, safe options.
Delta-8 THC is generally not regulated in the US. This means that you have to conduct a bit of research to ensure that the brand you’re buying from offers products that meet your quality standards. The first step to doing this is checking for third-party lab test results — otherwise known as Certificates of Analysis (COA).
Any reputable cannabinoid brand will have updated COAs available for viewing on their website. These COAs should test for cannabinoid potency, as well as purity (checking for impurities like heavy metals and pesticides), and they should come from well-known laboratories.
If the brand you’re looking at doesn’t have this information readily available, or it looks out-of-date or slightly sketchy, it’s time to move on. You don’t want to settle for anything other than the best when it comes to the quality of your delta-8 product.
It’s important to read customer reviews as well as lab test results. These reviews will tell you what real people have to say about the product, quality, customer service, and more. Customer reviews not affiliated with the website are a good place to check too, as they are likely to not be biased about their opinions.
Finally, do a quick check with the BBB to see if there have been any substantial complaints about the company. This is a good way to see if the brand has had any problems in the past with mislabeling or unsafe products.
How is Delta-8 Added to Flower?
The way that delta-8 is added to flower is going to depend on the brand and how the manufacturer wants to do it. At the base of it all is delta-8 THC distillate, though, as the distillate is easy to work with and coat around the flower.
At ATLRx, we use powdered delta-8 THC distillate. Then, we take our hemp flower and coat the flower in the distillate. Then, after it’s dried and preserved, we coat the flower in a layer of kief, as well. This is the best way to curate high-quality, easy-to-consume delta-8 flower.
Other brands may choose to take their delta-8 distillate and leave it in an oil-liquid form. Then, they dip the flower into the distillate and wait for it to dry. After that, they will dip the flower in their choice of kief. Neither of these options is necessarily better than the other; they’re just different and depend on the preference of the brand.
Is Delta-8 Natural or Synthetic?
Whether or not delta-8 THC is a natural or synthetic cannabinoid is up for debate. Technically, delta-8 THC naturally occurs in the cannabis plant. It is a 100% organic cannabinoid that the plant produces in small amounts. However, in order to actually get delta-8 extract and have the products that we do, we have to rely on labs.
The delta-8 products that you buy online are man-made and made in labs. However, the actual process utilized to create the products is not synthesized, and it doesn’t rely on chemical additives for curation. So, there’s nothing inherently “unnatural” about delta-8 THC. Because of this difficult dichotomy, some people consider the cannabinoid to be “semi-synthetic,” while many argue that it’s synthetic at all.
Where to Buy Your Delta-8 Flower
Now that you know how delta-8 flower is made, the next thing people want to know is where to buy delta-8 flower in the first place.
Thankfully for you, you can purchase high-quality delta-8 flower in various different strains right here from ATLRx. ATLRx has a huge selection of popular D8 strains: from indicas to sativas and, of course, hybrids in between, we’ve got it all.
You can always check our updated COAs or read our customer reviews, too, if you’re interested. At ATLRx, we’re committed to providing the best product quality and customer experience possible. So, the next time you want to check out some delta-8 flower, let ATLRx be your one-stop cannabinoid shop.
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