East Texas Smoke shops adjusting to the Delta-8 ban

Local News

ATHENS, Texas (KETK) – Since the Delta 8 ban was announced recently, many East Texas businesses are working to get rid of these products.

According to the FDA, Delta 8 is a form a THC that is found in the Cannabis sativa plant in small traces. Texas’ legalization of hemp products in 2019 allowed products with a concentration 0.03% or less of delta-9 THC.

Destini Kennedy, Manager of Scorpion Smoke Shop in Athens says they’ve been scrambling to figure out alternatives for their business. “ No one has told us how to properly get rid of the Delta-8. No one has an answer. I’ve called, I’ve asked numerous people how do we properly dispose of this, what do we do, and now all 5 of our stores are just overloaded with back stock,” said Kennedy.

Kennedy shares that both she and her employees have had to place everything on huge discounted prices.

“We emptied out three display cases, we’ve cleared off our counters, that was just packed full of pre-rolls, flower, gummies, vapes, cartridges. You name it—we had it,” said Kennedy.

Many small smoke shop businesses say 70-80% of their income was coming from the Delta 8 products. Now, they are struggling to find new products to stock on their empty shelves.

“I’ve been looking on the internet for items that RAW makes, such as dog collars, Christmas stockings, Christmas lights that are still smoke shop cute with cannabis plants, and Monopoly game boards,” said Kennedy.

She’s worried about customers who relied on Delta 8 to alleviate anxiety, pain, and insomnia. Now, if any East Texan is caught with this form of cannabis – it is now deemed a felony, unlike its counterpart, marijuana, containing delta 9, which is a misdemeanor in the state of Texas.

“I think that it is because medical marijuana was passed on Sept. 1st. So, why would you go to the doctor, bill your insurance, pay a co-pay for the medical grade which is just gummies or tinctures, when you can just go to your smoke shop and get a Delta 8 for $34.99”, says Kennedy.

Smoke shops are working diligently to ensure that they get rid of the Delta 8 products and await clarification from the government on what is allowed as far as cannabis is concerned now.

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