Is Delta 9 Legal in Florida?

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Thanks to the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp-derived THC products are legal nationwide as long as they don’t contain over 0.3% delta-9 THC per dry weight. Several states, however, allow for medical or recreational marijuana use, which may have some consumers wondering if Delta-9 THC is legal in Florida or any particular legalized state.

Put simply, delta-9 THC is legal in Florida for individuals with a qualifying medical condition participating in the state’s medical marijuana program. Otherwise, delta-9 THC products are illegal unless they are sourced from hemp plants and contain less than 0.3% THC. Otherwise, the plant and product it produced are considered marijuana and violate federal law, even though it’s still the same chemical: delta-9 THC.

Read on for everything you need to know about Florida’s marijuana laws and what the latest regulations say about delta-9 THC.

Key Takeaways

      • Delta-9 THC is federally legal and legal in Florida if the product comes from hemp and has less than 0.3% THC per dry weight.
      • Hemp-derived delta-9 THC and delta-9 THC from cannabis are the same chemicals.
      • Florida has a medical marijuana program that allows qualifying patients to purchase legal high-THC products. 

What is Delta-9?

Delta-9 THC, or THC, is the most abundant cannabinoid in the cannabis plant, which includes hemp and marijuana as varieties. THC is primarily responsible for the intoxicating effects that come from consumption. Cannabis cultivars contain varying amounts of THC potency, making certain strains more or less intoxicating than others.

Conversely, the hemp plant contains very low levels of delta-9 THC due to federal limits. Hemp is typically cultivated for industrial or agricultural use and, by law, may contain no more than 0.3% THC, as required by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. 

Regardless of where the delta-9 THC comes from, it’s the same chemical. The law simply governs what is permissible or illegal to produce and sell to consumers. 

Hemp-Derived Delta-9 vs. Cannabis-Derived THC

The key difference between hemp-derived delta-9 THC and cannabis-derived THC lies in the source material and extraction process. The USDA legalized the cultivation of hemp plants, so many nationwide manufacturers extract delta-9 THC from hemp rather than marijuana, which is still a Schedule I controlled substance.

At the chemical level, hemp-derived delta-9 THC and the regular kind are the same things. In high enough concentrations, THC derived from hemp plants can still produce the intoxicating effects that many consumers desire. These higher-concentration products can include:

Generally speaking, habitual THC consumers retain the cannabinoid in their bodies far longer than occasional or infrequent users. How long and often you consume delta-9 THC lengthens the time it takes to process and eliminate its metabolites.

Different drug tests, including blood, urine, hair follicle, and saliva, have varying sensitivity to detecting delta-9 THC. In Florida, the law does not require employers to provide protections for employees using delta-9 THC, even with a valid medical marijuana card.

Unless you live in a recreationally legal state or are a medical marijuana patient, however, products may only contain less than 0.3% THC per dry weight. The “per dry weight” is key here, as the Farm Bill doesn’t specify guidelines for delta-9 products such as oils or gummies. As such, some manufacturers can get away with higher potency products that produce similar highs to the THC products found in a marijuana dispensary.

How Long Does Delta-9 Stay in Your System?

When considering whether to consume delta-9 THC in Florida, it’s essential to understand how long its metabolites stay in your system. The effects are relatively short-lived, depending on the potency of what you consume, but tell-tale signs of THC linger up to months after ingesting. This is especially important for an unexpected drug test: someone consuming a federally legal (under 0.3% THC) product could technically test positive for cannabis use.

The breakdown and elimination of marijuana use ranges from a couple hours up to 90 days, depending on certain factors:

  • Dose: The more THC in your product, the longer it takes the body to process and eliminate the cannabinoid
  • Metabolism: Some individuals have faster metabolisms than others, meaning they will naturally more quickly flush THC metabolites from their bodies.
  • Weight: Delta-9 THC and its metabolites are fat-soluble, meaning that they can attach to fat cells in the body and remain longer in your system. With exercise, these metabolites can release from the adipose tissue, reenter the bloodstream, and cause a failed drug test.
  • Frequency of use

Is Delta-9 Legal in Florida?

Hemp-derived delta-9 THC products are legal in Florida under SB 1020 as long as they meet federal guidelines and contain less than 0.3% THC per dry weight. Though some manufacturers use creative loopholes as described above to get around this limit, it’s essential to use your best discretion when purchasing these products in Florida.

For those seeking legal, higher-potency delta-9 THC options, Florida operates a medical marijuana program. Those with a qualifying medical condition and a recommendation from their physician can purchase a 35-day supply of THC medicine with up to 10% THC. Patients must be legal residents of Florida and apply with the medical marijuana registry to shop at a dispensary.

Florida Marijuana Laws

In Florida, nearly 75% of residents voted to legalize Amendment 2 in 2016, which legalized medical marijuana for patients in need and allowed those with a card to purchase medical cannabis no higher than 10% THC potency. Before this bill, Florida only allowed patients with certain terminal conditions to use low-THC products.

Patients and those purchasing hemp-derived delta-9 products cannot consume cannabis in public places or on transportation. It’s also illegal to drive a motor vehicle or operate heavy machinery while intoxicated by cannabis, regardless of the source material (hemp or marijuana). 

The cultivation of cannabis plants or hemp plants is illegal. Only businesses legally licensed to cultivate cannabis or hemp by the state of Florida or the USDA are allowed to cultivate marijuana or hemp plants, respectively. 

Where to Buy Delta-9 in Florida

If you’re looking for hemp-derived delta-9 THC products in Florida, you can often find them in health-food stores or pharmacy chains, such as Whole Foods or CVS. Hemp-derived delta-9 THC products are beneficial for those looking to wind down after a long day, fight insomnia, or manage muscle pain or soreness.

Conversely, those seeking higher potency products can only purchase from licensed medical marijuana treatment centers in Florida if they have a medical marijuana card. Qualifying conditions in Florida that medical cannabis may help include chronic pain, PTSD, and cancer, among many others.

Our Evn store features a selection of hemp-derived delta-9 products alongside the other options in our CBD collection. Keep an eye out on our Evn store if you're looking for legal delta-9 products in Florida. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you smoke delta 9 in public in Florida?

It is against the law to smoke delta 9 THC or generally consume marijuana in public places in Florida. Only medical marijuana patients may consume cannabis with more than 0.3% THC, but even hemp-derived cannabis smoking is prohibited in public.

Can you buy delta 9 in Florida without a medical card?

A medical marijuana card is unnecessary to buy hemp-derived delta-9 THC products in Florida. However, you must register with the state’s medical marijuana program to acquire higher-potency products.

Disclaimer: This article was last updated in April 2023 and reflects federal and state legal information as of this date. Cannabis laws in the U.S. are continually shifting; therefore, the information in this article is subject to change. The information in this article does not constitute legal advice, and no entity at EVN-CBD is claiming to provide legal advice. Please visit your official state website for more information on your state’s cannabis laws and regulations.

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