The fledgling delta-8-THC niche is already facing a major roadblock – the COVID-19 relief bill.
Yes, this does sound like an algorithm constructed a sentence out of incompatible phrases from two completely different universes.
For some reason, buried somewhere deep within the 5,593 pages that are the COVID-19 relief bill, the longest bill in U.S. history, was the so-called PACT Act (Prevent All Cigarette Trafficking Act), which prohibits the mail order of CBD, THC, and Delta-8-THC vape cartridges, among other things, and their shipment with USPS, UPS, and FEDEX. The PACT Act comes into effect on April 26.
The word “cigarette” in the context of this bill encompasses all “electronic nicotine delivery systems,” and nicotine, respectively, includes all vaping liquids that contain THC, CBD, and any of their derivates, like delta-8-THC.
This means that while selling delta-8-THC vape cartridges remains legal, the shipment itself isn’t, which seems like a classic political move to impede an industry with unjustified extra hoops to jump through without actually making it illegal.
With the USPS, UPS, and FedEx out of the equation, delta-8-THC companies would have to use alternative, private, more expensive services to deliver their products to their customers. This change will drive the prices up if companies are to make a profit, with experts estimating the increase to be roughly twofold.
Moreover, 90 days after the PACT Act has been enacted, an act within it – the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act, will have all online retailers of vape products comply with new, stringent regulations. They include keeping extensive records of orders and consumer information and fulfilling complicated tax-related paperwork obligations to each state they’ve sold a product in, which all sounds like a recipe for a bureaucratic nightmare, especially considering the discrepancies between different states’ regulations of such matters.
This drastic change, especially in a niche this infant, will likely drive many small companies out of the delta-8-THC market, if not cause the entire delta-8-THC market out of the cannabis industry altogether. And that’s not even considering the fact that this blow comes amid a pandemic, which is ironic, considering it’s supposed to be a COVID-19 relief bill.