The Food & Drug Administration issued a warning that from December 2020 through July 2021, it had received adverse event reports describing emergency room patients who had eaten delta-8 THC food products. The adverse events included hallucinations, trouble standing, vomiting, and loss of consciousness.
Between January 2021 and July 31, 2021, national poison control centers received 660 cases of Delta-8 exposure. Of those cases:
- 41% involved unintentional exposure to delta-8 THC and 77% of these unintentional exposures affected patients younger than 18 years of age.
- 39% involved pediatric patients less than 18 years of age
- 18% required hospitalizations, including children who required intensive care unit admission.
The amount of delta-8 THC naturally occurring in hemp is very low. Additional chemicals are required to convert other cannabinoids in hemp, like CBD, into delta-8 THC. The FDA concerns are that some manufacturers use unsafe household chemicals to make delta-8 THC through this chemical synthesis process; additional chemicals are used to change the color of the final product; and, because these products are unregulated, the manufacturing of delta-8 THC products may be taking place under unsanitary conditions.
The FDA has further concerns that packaging for these products is overly appealing to minors. “These products may be purchased online, as well as at a variety of retailers, including convenience stores and gas stations, where there may not be age limits on who can purchase these products. As discussed above, there have been numerous poison control center alerts involving pediatric patients who were exposed to delta-8 THC-containing products. Additionally, animal poison control centers have indicated a sharp overall increase in accidental exposure of pets to these products.”