AUSTIN (Nexstar) — The state surprised CBD stores and convenience stores across Texas when it recently updated its Schedule 1 controlled substance guidelines to include the commonly sold hemp product, Delta 8.
But industry executives say the only communication the state has given the public so far is a brief wording update on their website.
Capital CBD American Shaman store owner Michael Sterling said nearly 35% of his store’s sales come from Delta 8 products.
“I have products generally in all forms, from gummies to some vape cartridges and tinctures,” Sterling said, “A lot of people use it for sleeping. A lot of people use it for pain relief.
It has grown in popularity over the past three years.
“You’ll find it in just about any CBD store, smokehouse, and even on the shelves of many convenience stores now,” explained Zachary Maxwell of Texas Hemp Growers.
At the federal level, it is legal. It is less potent than Delta 9, the THC component of marijuana.
Current law gives the state health commissioner the power to overrule federal drug regulations. In May, DSHS Associate Commissioner Stephen Pahl told a committee hearing that the state was pushing to add it to its list of Schedule 1 substances because it can be synthetically enhanced.
“Because there are other compounds, or deltas or isomers, of THC that have pharmacological or psychoactive properties, the health commissioner has chosen to oppose these schedules,” Pahl told a hearing. of the Senate committee.
Sterling said he was blindsided by the latest status update this month.
“Something could have been communicated along the lines, so we have an idea,” he said.
Sterling said the state needs to raise awareness and regulate Delta 8 products rather than ban them.
“We need to make sure whoever’s selling is educating the customer and it’s not in all, you know, convenience stores or any store that only has a license to sell product,” Sterling said.
Maxwell agrees that regulation is needed.
“The state should be more concerned with making sure these products are made responsibly, instead of pushing them into the black market,” Maxwell explained.
Currently, law enforcement officials would be responsible for testing the drug and charging anyone caught with Delta 8.
Maxwell said he already knew Texans had been arrested for it.
“I have it on good authority from a leading attorney in this state that there have been more than six arrests in the past 90 days. And in all cases they face charges of criminal possession. “, did he declare.
DSHS did not respond to Nexstar Media’s email or phone requests for comment on the recent update, or how the agency would investigate cases in the future, if at all.