At the Frankincense Store we are extremely passionate about delivering you the finest quality frankincense. We take great pride in all our resins, thus ensuring they are carefully separated by its colour size and smell. This process is called ‘Grading’. Grading can take from a couple of weeks up to a month. Our Grading is the unique technique advanced by The Frankincense Store to bring out the natural qualities and aroma of the resins. It is only our Omani Boswellia Sacra Frankincense that we spend time grading on. Grading can be a very complex task, as every harvest produces different qualities. Omani Frankincense has been classified into four types according to region of growth. The finest quality is Hojari, which is from the trees that grow in the Eastern part of Dhofar. The second grade is known as Najdi, which grows in the Najd area, north of the Dhofar Mountains. The third class is called Shazri, and its trees grow in the western area and the fourth quality is called Shabi, whose trees grow in the coastal plain where rainfall is adequate.
On each visit to Oman choosing the sacks personally is very important to us, so we know what to expect from each harvest and from what region they are from. The Omanis have their own grading system which works for them. However The Frankincense Stores complex grading technique has advanced so much that some of our grades are not even available to purchase in Oman.
After choosing the sacks they are shipped to our warehouse in the UK once arrived each sack is graded 1 by 1. All the grading is carried out by store founder Shehbaz Khan, who takes 8 hours a day to grade a 40 kg sack. Firstly all the powder is removed by sieving it from the resins. Simultaneously all the smaller granules are too removed out. Then all the tree bark and any other bits such as stones and twigs.
Followed by the deep concentration of separating every piece by shape colour size begins in natural daylight. The light must be right for us to bring out the best in quality. Too bright and all the colours look the same, too dull and you cannot see all the colours. We look out for our rare Green Hojari Frankincense, which has amazing medicinal properties. All the different grades are sorted into baskets which are then packed into our hessian and retails packs. Sometimes the baskets have to be re-graded to ensure that our resins stay constant in quality. However as all our resins are 100% natural and organic and there will always be slight differences in quality and appearance with every new batch of Frankincense.
The entire process from buying , grading , packing and selling is carried out manually and no machines are used.