With Delta 8 THC making a big splash in the cannabis community, many people are just learning about this cannabinoid for the first time. Because Delta 8 is just now entering the mainstream consciousness, many people are still confused about it and wondering, “is Delta 8 THC synthetic?”
Delta 8 THC is not synthetic, and it is not the same thing as “K2.” We’re going to break down what Delta 8 THC is, where it comes from, and how it’s made in this article. If you’re interested to learn more about Delta 8 and want to try it for yourself, you’ve come to the right place.
Delta 8 THC is Not The Same As K2
Delta 8 THC is a naturally occurring cannabinoid found in the hemp plant. Once isolated, the Delta 8 can be added to products for consumption.
K2, on the other hand, is entirely human-made. It was specifically made to try to get around existing drug laws around marijuana.
When K2 was first introduced to the market, it was seen as a legal alternative to marijuana, and the safety was not assessed. Since then, K2 has shown itself to be a nefarious chemical that leads to many issues for the people that use it.
K2 led to an increase in hospitalizations and overdoses around the country. Many people who used this chemical reported psychosis, agitation, and anxiety, with many people having much more severe reactions. Some of the worst responses to K2 are seizures, stroke, heart arrhythmia, kidney failure, and even death.
History of Delta 8 THC
Delta 8 THC was discovered in the 1970s by a group of Israeli researchers. These researchers were isolating cannabinoids found in the hemp plant to study them.
Quick side note, cannabinoids are the chemicals that interact with the body’s cannabinoid receptors (CBRs or CB for short). Cannabinoids are produced naturally by the human body and can also be found in naturally occurring plants such as hemp and marijuana. These CB receptors and cannabinoids are collectively called the endocannabinoid system in the human body.
Delta 8 THC was one of many chemicals that were isolated and named at the time. These researchers were also interested in how they interacted with the human body’s endocannabinoid system and led to a slew of follow-up research into these chemicals.
Difference Between Delta 8 THC and K2
The first and most important is that Delta 8 THC is naturally found in hemp. It is a naturally occurring chemical compound that shares a similar chemical structure to Delta 9 THC (the main chemical in medical marijuana). Responsibly made Delta 8 THC products use only Delta 8 derived from hemp. Minimal processing is done to isolate Delta 8 THC to add it to Delta 8 gummies, carts, and tinctures.
K2, on the other hand, is entirely man made and is not seen in hemp plants at all. K2 also doesn’t describe just one chemical. It is a broad name given to chemicals designed to mimic the effects of marijuana. This makes it even more dangerous because doctors often don’t know precisely what they are treating if you’re admitted to a hospital for ingestion of K2.
Another significant difference is that Delta 8 THC binds much more weakly to the body’s CB receptors than K2 chemicals. K2 often binds 4-5 times higher than Delta 8, leading to intense reactions and long lasting effects.
Delta 8 THC, on the other hand, only has mild effects that leave the person feeling relaxed and uplifted with calming euphoric effects. It even reacts differently in the body than Delta 9 THC, which can be overwhelming for many people.
How K2 and Delta 8 Are Made
K2 is made in bathtub-style “laboratories,” The chemicals used are usually unique to the people who make them. Some K2 even uses typical household roach spray to cover their tracks. Because the chemicals used are identifiable to specific manufacturers, the roach spy makes it harder to find out the exact makeup, making it harder to trace.
Once the newest concoction of chemicals is made up (which they do every so often to find ways around the latest laws), they spray it onto plant material. This plant material is usually tea or some other form of dried leaves that the end-user can smoke.
How Delta 8 THC is made is completely different. Delta 8 comes from naturally grown hemp that is not adulterated in any way. All hemp grown for the extraction of Delta 8 THC and other cannabinoids is registered with the state they are grown in. These plants have been bred to have higher amounts of Delta 8 THC and low amounts of Delta 9 THC.
Once the plants reach maturity, they are sent to a processing center where the Delta 8 THC is extracted from the hemp plant. These processing laboratories are also registered with state agencies to ensure proper safety measures are being implemented.
The pure extracted Delta 8 THC is then tested to ensure quality and purity and sold to manufacturers to be added to end products. Once they’re added to the end products, they are again lab tested for quality and purity before making their way onto the market and into the consumer’s hands.
The Legality of Delta 8 THC vs. K2
Under the 2018 Farm Bill, industrial hemp was made legal to grow and sell. This bill changed the definition of marijuana from any plant hemp plant to those only containing more than .3% Delta 9 THC.
The 2018 Farm Bill not only opened doors to cannabinoids like CBD and Delta 8 THC but fabrics, textiles, animal feed, paper, etc.
Because Delta 8 THC is a naturally occurring chemical in hemp and is not Delta 9 THC, it allows for Delta 8 THC products nationwide. Some states don’t allow for the sale of Delta 8 THC, but federally, there are no restrictions. If you’re wondering is Delta 8 THC legal in your state, you can check out our list.
K2 is illegal in most states. When K2 first made its way onto the market, it was legal because it was completely new. Over the years, government officials tried to make the specific chemicals in K2 illegal as soon as they hit the market.
However, anytime they would make one chemical illegal to sell, the producers of K2 would just change the chemical and release a new version that was different from the original. This led government officials to stop passing a new law every time a new one of these chemicals hit the market and pass a law the got to the heart of the issue.
The federal government passed a law called the Analogue Act, making any artificial chemical meant for human consumption illegal if the intended effect was substantially similar to that of an illicit substance. Now, anytime a new version of K2 comes out, it is automatically illegal under the Analogue Act, and new laws don’t need to be written.
Delta 8 THC Now
Now you know! Delta 8 THC is not the same thing as K2! Just to put it into a simple list, here are the key takeaways:
- Delta 8 THC is naturally derived from hemp
- K2 is synthetically made in a lab
- Delta 8 THC is federally legal under the 2018 Farm Bill
- K2 is illegal under the Federal Analogue Act
- Delta 8 THC has mild soothing effects
- K2 has dangerous effects that could lead to lifelong damage
It’s safe to say that staying away from K2 is a good idea. Not only for your health but to make sure you’re not put in jail!
Delta 8 is a remarkable natural cannabinoid that can help you relax without any terrible side effects that K2 has. All of the reputable companies that sell Delta 8 THC products like Delta 8 gummies, will have 3rd party lab testing and a chain of custody, so they know precisely where their Delta 8 came from.
If you’re looking to get your hands on federally legal Delta 8 THC, take a look at our full product line. We have a large selection of Delta 8 THC products that are 3rd party lab tested with links to the lab reports on every bottle. Hometown Hero also has an industry-leading customer support and a Worry-Free Guarantee that makes dealing with us a breeze!
If you have any questions about Delta 8 THC or anything else, feel free to contact us! We’d love to hear from you and are happy to answer any questions you may have.