In terms of its legal status, THCA is by far one of the most interesting cannabinoids to consider. Technically, this is a precursor cannabinoid, which means that THCA turns into THC, something we'll take a closer look at further below.
As you might know, THC, otherwise known as Delta-9 THC, is only legal at a federal level so long as it is hemp-derived, and if it is present in quantities under 0.3%. In the grand scheme of things, Delta-9 THC is however illegal, particularly if it comes from the marijuana plant, and if it is present in quantities over 0.3%.
This begs the question of what the legal status of THCA is like. After all, THCA turns into Delta-9 THC through a process known as decarboxylation, although THCA itself is technically not Delta-9 THC yet. Today, we want to figure out whether or not THCA is legal in South Carolina.
What is THCA?
THCA stands for Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, which is the precursor to Delta-9 THC, or in other words, its acidic version. THCA on its own is generally not intoxicating or psychoactive. Due to its chemical structure, it does not have an affinity to bind with your CB1 receptors, and therefore naturally does not produce any intoxicating effect. It does not get you high.
However, THCA is necessary in order to produce Delta-9 THC. THCA turns into Delta-9 THC, which happens thanks to a process known as decarboxylation.
This means that through the application of a certain amount of heat for a certain amount of time, THCA changes its chemical structure and effectively turns into Delta-9 THC. As you might know, Delta-9 THC is very psychoactive and intoxicating. This is the substance that most people look for when they purchase cannabis because it is what gets you high.
THCA and Federal Law
As far as federal law is concerned, THCA is by far one of the most complicated cannabinoids out there. According to the 2018 Farm Bill, any cannabinoid product that is derived from the hemp plant is legal so long as it does not contain Delta-9 THC levels exceeding 0.3% in dry weight concentration. This is very interesting because THCA turns into Delta-9 THC, but is not Delta-9 THC just yet. This is where things get complicated.
Technically speaking, THCA products should be legal at a federal level, simply because when tested after harvest, it does not show significant levels of Delta-9 THC.
According to the USDA or United States Department of Agriculture, hemp is to be tested pre-harvest, with the total THC content being tested for. This means that not only does the USDA recommend testing for Delta-9 THC prior to the harvest of the hemp plants, but also for the potential for Delta-9 THC, which means that the USDA generally also tests for THCA content, as it can turn into Delta-9 THC.
Although it is a bit complicated to explain, there is a loophole here that allows hemp buds with high THCA contents to still be legal. This is because the total THC content is only tested before the harvest of the hemp plants, but generally not afterward. After the plant is harvested, only Delta-9 THC is usually tested for, with THCA contents being ignored. This means that a hemp plant that has already been harvested is legally allowed to contain levels of THCA exceeding 0.3%.
Furthermore, according to the DEA or Drug Enforcement Administration, THCA contents are irrelevant. According to the DEA, only Delta-9 THC should be tested for, and the legality of these products does not depend on THCA contents in any way. The main takeaway here is that at this time, technically speaking, products containing high levels of THCA should be completely legal so long as they do not also contain levels of Delta-9 THC exceeding 0.3%.
South Carolina THCA Laws
As far as South Carolina is concerned, the law is the same as the federal law, which is thanks to South Carolina House Bill 3449. This bill officially legalized all extracts, derivatives, cannabinoids, and isomers that are derived from the hemp plant.
This means that for one, Delta-9 THC is legal so long as it is not present in quantities over 0.3%, and as long as it is hemp-derived. Therefore, THCA products, just like at the federal level, should be legal. That said, there is no law in South Carolina that expressly legalizes THCA specifically, so caution is recommended.
Is THCA a Controlled Substance in South Carolina?
At this time, there are no indications that THCA is a controlled substance in the state of South Carolina. Yes, Delta-9 THC when present in quantities over 0 3%, and when derived from the marijuana plant, is considered illegal, and this is a controlled substance. However, at this time, there is no specific legislation that labels THCA as a controlled substance.
THCA Possession Limits in SC
According to the laws surrounding THCA, or technically the lack thereof, there do not appear to be any possession limits for this specific cannabinoid.
Is THCA Legal in South Carolina?
Although there are no specific laws in South Carolina that indicate that THCA is 100% legal, there are also no laws that expressly prohibit it.
Is THCA Safe?
At this time, there are no indications that THCA is unsafe, particularly when consumed in moderate quantities. In fact, THCA may even have a variety of potential benefits, both for the mind and body.
Remember that THCA on its own, when it has not yet been decarboxylated, should not produce psychoactive or intoxicating effects. This means that you can reap the potential benefits of this cannabinoid, all without getting high.
Of course, if you do want to get high, simply smoke or vaporize it, or decarboxylate it in your oven, to turn THCA into the very psychoactive and potent Delta-9 THC.
Where to Buy THCA in South Carolina?
If you want to get high and try some totally legal Delta-9 THC for yourself, right here at Botany Farms is the place to be.
We have an amazing selection of legally compliant products to choose from, including these super tasty Delta-9 Mixed Flavor THC Gummies, These Nano Delta-9 Microdose Gummies, and this Delta-9 THC Gummies Sample Pack.Click here to find out more about some high THCA strains that you might be interested in!