Benchmark Coffee Traders distributes high quality green coffees from Sigri Estate in Papua New Guinea. They have direct family ties with these coffee producers and they work closely with them to bring their beautiful coffees to roasters in America. They support a strong social agenda that provides free housing, free healthcare, and free schooling to the coffee pickers and farmers who work tirelessly to help produce these unique coffees.
All coffee bearing the Sigri name is grown at over 5000 feet elevation. Sigri considers soil and water conservation as a priority and the estate is bird and eco-friendly. Sigri employs a medium density shade strategy, using two types of shade trees. This promotes even ripening of coffee cherries and provides habitat for at least 90 species of birds.
Sigri is a washed Arabica coffee that undergoes a rigorous wet factory process. Quality Control begins in the field; Cherries are hand-picked and carefully checked for uniformity; it must be red and fully ripe which allows for the correct balance of sugar and acid within the cherry. This selected cherry is then pulped on the day of picking.
A fermentation process follows, a period of three days broken every 24 hours by washing – but unlike many other coffees, the Sigri process follows this by total immersion in water for a further day. This balances the flavors. After sun-drying, the coffees are carefully conditioned for 21 days. This is followed by destoning, hulling, grading, densometric sorting, color sorting, and finally hand sorting.
All coffees are continuously sample-roasted and cupped at the estate level as well as by their quality control team in Chicago. This provides a final check on the quality of the green bean during processing, before shipment, and upon arrival in America.