Part II: Inside Clif Bar


By Michelle Bartlome

Emeryville, California ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV ) A 90 million dollar investment and the creation of 250 jobs in southern Idaho.

That's what a brand new company is planning to bring to the Magic Valley.

Clif Bar & Company plans to build a state-of-the-art bakery in Twin Falls.

Clif Bar is a leading maker of nutritious and organic food and drinks.

Their new bakery, when fully operational, will make Clif Bars and Clif Kid Z Bars.

Sunday we took you inside their headquarters in California to show you what the company is all about.

Monday, Michelle Bartlome explains why they picked Twin Falls as their new "home."

It's Clif Bar & Company's biggest decision yet… opening a new bakery in Twin Falls.

"This is the first time, as a company, the first time that we have made the commitment to an area to build, own and operate our own facility," says Kevin Cleary, CEO of Clif Bar & Company..

Since Clif Bar's launch in 1992, they've continued to grow.

And now, they're ready for their next move.

"We make all of our own recipes in house. We have Clif bakers here at our offices. We have a gourmet kitchen upstairs. And people spend, our bakers spend every day working on new formulas and recipes. As we have done it in the past to this point and we will continue to do in the future, often times we will bring these recipes to our partners that will make these for us on a bigger bakery lines to bring to market," Cleary explains.

The transition from Emeryville, California, where their current headquarters are, to the bakery in Twin Falls is one that everyone is looking forward to.

"This will enable future innovation for us out of that facility for new products. There is nothing at this point in time that I have earmarked for that. But, I think without question with an energized, energetic team of people working at Clif Bar in Twin Falls and with the innovated minds we have in our kitchen with the bakers, there is no doubt that there is going to be a lot of great things coming out of that bakery," Cleary says.

But, in order to open their doors, they need employees.

"Our plan right now is to hire as many local people as we can. We are looking for people with the skill sets that we need with the different jobs that are in a baking facility, so whether that's machinists, engineers, food safety specialists, people operating the lines, we are looking for all of those. We are ideally sourcing all of those from the local area," Cleary explains.

The new bakery will be constructed on nearly 90 acres. It will be 300-thousand square feet initially and employ 250 people.

"We have a vision of that growing in time up to employing about 450 people and being anywhere from 450,000 square feet to 500,000 square feet," Cleary says.

They plan to break ground in 2015 and start baking bars in January of 2016.

So why Twin Falls?

"From a brand standpoint, I don't think there is a more beautiful spot that we could have chosen with Shoshone Falls and the Canyon. It is just gorgeous," Cleary explains.

"It was very clear to us that Twin Falls was the right answer," he adds.

The right answer for a new beginning.

The Twin Falls Urban Renewal Agency will finance the relocation and addition of new infrastructure, such as roads and utility lines, through tax increment financing, which will be returned by the company over a 20-year period through property tax assessments.

For more on Michelle Bartlome's journey to their headquarters, watch Connections this weekend on Fox 14. It airs on Saturday night at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday morning at 9 a.m.

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