Virginia hemp panel suggests tougher rules on unregulated THC products

A state task force studying the rise of unregulated cannabis products in Virginia is recommending stricter rules for businesses selling hemp-based delta-8 THC products that technically aren’t cannabis but produce a similar high when eaten or smoked.

Virginia’s piecemeal approach to legalizing cannabis has led to major enforcement gaps, with convenience stores and smoke shops offering a variety of difficult-to-classify products in the continued absence of state-sanctioned retail cannabis sales for adult use. 

The General Assembly created a task force this year to get a better handle on hemp-derived edibles and inhaled products that, unlike CBD, can get users high, but usually with a milder effect. A lengthy report the task force delivered last month points to possible legislation state lawmakers will take up when they return to Richmond next month.

Businesses that sell delta-8 products, the task force concluded, should have to apply for a permit and face tougher civil penalties for breaking the rules.

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