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Reviews > Food > Energy Bars and Drinks > Clif Bar Kits Organic Bars > Test Report by Michael Pearl

CLIF KIT'S ORGANIC BARS
TEST SERIES BY MIKE PEARL
LONG-TERM REPORT

INITIAL REPORT - August 06, 2012
LONG TERM REPORT - November 04, 2012

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Mike Pearl
EMAIL: mikepearl36ATyahooDOTcom
AGE: 38
LOCATION: Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 5' 9" (1.75 m)
WEIGHT: 155 lb (70.30 kg)

I have a great appreciation for the outdoors and get out at every opportunity. I am a three-season backpacker and year round hiker. Currently, my trips are two to three days long as well as an annual week-long trip. I utilize the abundant trail shelters in my locale and pack a backup tarp-tent. I like to cover big distances while still taking in the views. I have lightweight leanings but function and reliability are the priority. I mostly travel woodland mountain terrain but enjoy hiking beautiful trails anywhere.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Manufacturer: CLIF Bar & Company
Year of Manufacture: 2012
Manufacturer's Website: www.clifbar.com
MSRP: US $17.99 (12 bar / box)

Kit's Organic Bars come in four different flavors, all are gluten, soy and dairy free. They are also labeled USDA Organic and certified organic by QAI, Quality Assurrance International. Bars out of their wrappers measure roughly 3-1/2 x 1-1/2 x 5/8 in (9 x 4 x 1.5 cm).

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Flavor: Cashew
Listed Net Weight: 1.62 oz (46 g)
Measured Weight: 1.69 oz (48 g)

Ingredients: Organic Dates, Organic Cashews, Organic Almonds, Sea Salt
Serving Size: 1 bar IMAGE 1
Calories: 170
Calories from Fat: 70
Total Fat: 8g / 12% DV
Saturated Fat: 1.5g / 8% DV
Trans Fat: 0g
Polyunsat Fat: 1.5g
Monounsat Fat: 5g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 85mg / 4% DV
Potassium: 280mg / 8% DV
Total Carb: 27g / 0% DV
Dietary Fiber: 3g / 12% DV
Insoluble Fiber: 2g
Sugars: 15g
Protein: 3g
Vitamin A: 0%
Vitamin C: 0%
Calcium: 2%
Iron: 8%

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Flavor: Berry Almond
Listed Net Weight: 1.73 oz (49 g)
Measured Weight: 1.83 oz (52 g)

Ingredients: Organic Dates, Organic Almonds, Organic Barberries, Organic Bilberries, Sea Salt
Serving Size: 1 bar IMAGE 2
Calories: 180
Calories from Fat: 80
Total Fat: 9g / 14% DV
Saturated Fat: 0.5g / 3% DV
Trans Fat: 0g
Polyunsat. Fat: 2g
Monounsat. Fat: 5g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 65mg / 3% DV
Potassium: 290mg / 8% DV
Total Carb: 27g / 9% DV
Dietary Fiber: 5g / 20% DV
Insoluble Fiber: 3g
Sugars: 16g
Protein: 4g
Vitamin A: 0%
Vitamin C: 2%
Calcium: 6%
Iron: 6%

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Flavor: Peanut Butter
Listed Net Weight: 1.76 oz (50 g)
Measured Weight: 1.83 oz (52 g)

Ingredients: Organic Dates, Organic Peanuts, Organic Almonds, Sea Salt
Serving Size: 1 bar IMAGE 3
Calories: 200
Calories from Fat: 100
Total Fat: 11g / 17% DV
Saturated Fat: 2g / 10% DV
Trans Fat: 0g
Polyunsat. Fat: 4g
Monounsat. Fat: 5g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 95mg / 4% DV
Potassium: 320mg / 9% DV
Total Carb: 25g / 8% DV
Dietary Fiber: 4g / 16% DV
Insoluble Fiber: 2g
Sugars: 15g
Protein: 6g
Vitamin A: 0%
Vitamin C: 0%
Calcium: 2%
Iron: 4%

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Flavor: Chocolate Almond Coconut
Listed Net Weight: 1.68 oz (48 g)
Measured Weight: 1.83 oz (52 g)

Ingredients: Organic Dates, Organic Almonds, Organic Unsweetened Chocolate, Organic Coconut,
Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, Sea Salt
Serving Size: 1 bar IMAGE 4
Calories: 190
Calories from Fat: 100
Total Fat: 12g / 18% DV
Saturated Fat: 4.5g / 23% DV
Trans Fat: 0g
Polyunsat. Fat: 1.5g
Monounsat. Fat: 5g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 105mg / 4% DV
Potassium: 320mg / 9% DV
Total Carb: 25g / 8% DV
Dietary Fiber: 5g / 20% DV
Insoluble Fiber: 4g
Sugars: 15g
Protein: 4g
Vitamin A: 0%
Vitamin C: 0%
Calcium: 4%
Iron: 6%

Daily Values based on 2,000 calorie diet.

READING THE NUTRITION FACTS

Nothing surprising here the usual type of USDA food label. Until the ingredient list, only four or six different things in a bar. All are recognizable whole foods, nothing processed or artificial. I find it refreshing to easily read and understand each word on the label.

TRYING IT OUT

I removed one bar of each flavor from the wrapper to get their net weights. A compressed block of dates and nuts with a coating of crushed almonds on the bottom is revealed. Each one has a rather bland appearance and a slight fruity and nutty aroma. None of which is too shocking or disappointing. This is trail food and not gourmet, beauty contest stuff. But the taste is a different story. The texture is moist but not too chewy. The flavor is a good balance between sweet and salty at the same time rich and fulfilling. I had to stop myself from eating a second one.

I had one for a late morning snack and then a different flavor for a late afternoon snack. Each time my hunger was satisfied and I made it to lunch and dinner without feeling starved. I did this two days in a row sampling all four flavors. So far here's how I rank them, #1 Berry Almond, #2 close call Peanut Butter by a nose, #3 Chocolate Almond Coconut, #4 Cashew.

SUMMARY

These are tasty and satisfying bars. I like the whole food, fewer ingredient approach to nutrition. I think organic food production is an important thing and select it when possible. Now to see how these bars hold up against miles on the trail and the hunger that it brings.


LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Storrs Pond Recreation Area, New Hampshire - 8 mi (13 km) to 400 ft (122 m), 83 F (28 C) clear and calm

Balch Hill, New Hampshire - 2.5 mi (4 km) to 950 ft (290 m), 85 F (29 C) and sunny

The Pemi Loop, Pemiwagesset Wilderness, New Hampshire four days, three nights
48.5 mi (78 km) loop to 5249 ft (1600 m) with a cumulative gain of 9760 ft (2975 m). Temperatures a low of 40 F (4 C) and a high of 80 F (27 C). Mostly sunny with light winds on the exposed peaks and one major downpour.

Giles Mountain, Vermont - 3 mi (4.8 km) to 1873 ft (571 m), 76 F (24 C) and cloudy

Trail Maintenance Appalachian Trail, Vermont - 2.2 mi (3.5 km) to 1295 ft (395 m) cloudy intermittent light rain

Velvet Rocks, New Hampshire - 5.2 mi (8 km) to 1243 ft (379 m) on the Appalachian Trail, 66 F (19 C) mostly sunny

Camels Hump, Vermont - 18 mi (29 km) to 4081 ft (1244 m) with 3963 ft (1208 m) gained in 5.1 mi (8 m), 60 F (15.5 C) mostly cloudy with a few breaks of sunshine

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

Over the last three months I have consumed all 24 bars I received. Not once, during this time did I not look forward to tearing open the wrapper. On shorter day hikes the Kit Bars were a tasty almost treat like snack. I ate one at the summit of each hike. On a short but hard day of trail maintenance I gobbled two down back to back at the end of the hike.
IMAGE 1
Pemi Loop Rock Recliner

On the overnight hike, with bigger miles and climbs the Kit Bars felt more like fuel. They were still very tasty but much more satisfying and energizing. On the Pemi Loop days two and three were long and hard. My body was craving and needed frequent and quality calories. I ate every two to three hours if I was hungry or not. The Kit Bars hit the spot each time. Even when I was not hungry I found the texture and flavor appealing and the bar very easy to eat. My energy levels stayed constant without any hints of bonking out.

This test series came to an end for me hiking Camels Hump where I ate my last Kit Bars. Here too I used the every few hours snack break plan. Again the Kit Bars helped to keep me chugging along. I was able to hike all day without my stomach growling. Nor without having fantasies on the trail of food awaiting me back in town.

The Kit Bars always came out of the wrapper in one piece no matter how tightly jammed into my pack. They were never crumbling or squished to the wrapper. The texture and consistency were always the same at all temperatures experienced.

SUMMARY

Well the Kit Bars are gone. All that remains are delicious memories with great views. While I never put a bar back in my pack that I blindly grabbed, I do have my favorites. The order changed a bit, the number one spot goes to Chocolate Almond Coconut. Peanut Butter stays in the number two spot. Cashew advances to the number three spot. While Berry Almond slides to number four.

I sometimes find trail food tricky. When planning I want convenient, know I need nutritious, and like food to taste good. Further complicating things I try to minimize my consumption of over processed, preservative filled foods. On the trail I want foods that fill me up and energy that lasts. The Kit Bars have met all of these requirements. Besides just tasting good I also like them in principle for using organic whole ingredients.

Kit Bars will definitely be a part of my future backpack meal planning. I will keep an eye out for them at my local stores.
IMAGE 2
Munchin' on Mt Lafayette

This concludes my Long-Term Report and a tasty test series. A big thank you to CLIF Bar & Company and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test Kit's Organic Bars.




This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.5 Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.

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