CBD Laws in Kansas Leave Many Confused


While both medical and recreational cannabis remains illegal in Kansas, cannabidiol (CBD) has been growing in popularity. In fact, most Kansans have probably seen a string of CBD shops popping up in their local ordinances.

However, recently, a Kansas attorney general, court decision, along with a law change has brought about questions about how legal CBD products are in the state.

The biggest concern is delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is quite similar to delta-9 THC – the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. Initially, there seemed to be no issue with the products.

As Robert Anderson, an Ellis County Attorney, said last year, “At that time, I took a look at the Industrial Hemp Act. And it was my interpretation and my belief that those products are lawful.”

However, since he’s taken over, there’s been a legal gray area placed on delta-8 THC products with state legislators amending the act.

“The major crucial change is that it no longer distinguishes between delta-9 THC and any other THC,” Anderson noted. “It just says ‘Tetrahydrocannabinoid concentration.’ I’ve talked to a number of different people just trying to make sense of this amendment and how it fits into all of this. Why would we have these products all over the state of Kansas if they’re illegal?”

Last October, there was a case of a burglary at a delta-8 THC store. Beyond the burglary charge, the person responsible was also charged with the distribution of illegal hemp products. If this individual was able to receive such charges, why shouldn’t legitimate CBD and delta-8 shops?

The biggest problem with this legality confusion is it puts a strain on law enforcement. As mentioned by Anderson: “It’s almost impossible for law enforcement to figure out which products that they’re coming into contact with are lawful or not. My personal opinion is that marijuana and hemp should be legalized or at a minimum, decriminalized.”

The Confusion in Kansas is Felt Across the Country

If Kansas were to follow through with Anderson’s suggestion, there’d be a lot less to worry about in regards to the evolving cannabis (and hemp) industry.

Delta-8 is a new compound that must be made synthetically from CBD—often, from hemp byproduct. While it provides a similar effect as delta-9 THC, the differences between these two cannabinoids are slim beside one crucial matter: One is technically federally legal and the other isn’t.

If cannabis was legalized nationwide, we guarantee delta-8 wouldn’t exist. The only reason it does is that illegal states want a legal high.

As we’ve seen in other states, like Texas, lawmakers are just wrapping their heads around delta-8 and what it is. Just in time too as delta-10 is slowly emerging from the hemp industry—another cannabinoid found in cannabis (in very trace amounts) that gets you high and is technically legal.

Since delta-10 isn’t as easy to produce as delta-8, it may not have the same effect on America as delta-8 has. Still, there’s no denying that the majority of people simply want to enjoy cannabis without the worry of law enforcement. So much so that a recent poll revealed nearly 70 percent of Americans are in favor of legalization.

The problem Kansas is facing concerning confusion in the CBD industry is simply a product of nearly a century of cannabis prohibition. While it may seem like a complicated matter, the answer to their problem (along with much of the country’s) is quite easy—federally legalized cannabis.

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