For a state that pioneered medical cannabis and was a relatively early adopter of recreational cannabis (cannabis is defined only as marijuana here and not hemp), California is among the worst states in the union when it comes to sensible hemp-derived CBD policy. So it should surprise absolutely nobody that in legislation that’s designed to “legalize” CBD (AB-45 and SB-235), the state is now coming for delta-8 THC.
Before explaining what delta-8’s fate may be, I’ll provide a brief CliffsNotes for how bad California has handled CBD:
2018: California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued a FAQ on its website in July 2018 taking the position that CBD ingestibles were unlawful (check out an analysis of mine on those FAQs here). Over the next few years (according to a bill analysis accompanying AB-45, CDPH issued 13 notices of violation, 7 voluntary condemnation and destruction regulatory letters, and 9 embargoes in the wake of this–all without ever creating a real regulation! Local departments of public health were also active in enforcement. 2019: California tried but failed to pass AB-228, which would have legalized CBD. 2020: California tried by failed to pass AB-2827 and AB-2028 which were both targeted to legalize