As part of our recent re-launch, we’d like to introduce our brand-new blog feature: ‘Supplier Spotlight’. Here we’ll be interviewing the creative and hardworking individuals that create the delicious snacks that find their way into our boxes. In this month’s box, we are delighted to be featuring the unique and tasty ‘Saber-Toothed Tiger’ bar by Berlin-based company Die Kraft des Urstromtals.
Die Kraft des Urstromtals, translated as ‘The Force of the Glacial Valley’ produce delicious handmade energy bars, made from dried fruits, nuts and seeds and jerky. They use only the highest quality ingredients and tentatively make each and every bar by hand, as our ancestors may have done. Creators of fuel for the modern hunter gatherer, we caught up with founders Ivan and Janine to find out more about their exciting range of delicious energy bars.
Tell us more about Die Kraft des Urstromtals and your range of products
At Die Kraft des Urstromtals we are committed to producing healthy and tasty food at the highest quality. For us, that means food without useless ingredients such as synthetic stabilizers, binding or separating agents and all that stuff that the industry puts into mass products in order to make them cheaper and more durable. Instead, we use natural products only: nuts, berries and spices and by combining them with taste and intuition, we create sweet and savoury energy bars. We make them on our own and pack them by hand. Every single bar is like a small gift …
Currently we offer three different tastes. Soon we will be launching more bars: with protein, for endurance athletics, for other purposes. But always on a natural basis and always hand made. And always in compostable packagings. It is important for us to not only look after our products but also the waste that we produce. We don’t want to fill the oceans with plastics. So we use compostable packagings. That is a huge step forward compared to “degradable“ packaging. Plastics are also degradable. In 400 years…
How did it get started and what was the inspiration for launching the brand?
In fact, it started with a need: we do lots of sports. From hiking through the woods to swimming, fighting and riding. Or better: we did ;-) Since we started this project, we had to reduce our activities in order to get Die Kraft up and running…. Anyway, we also tried the paleo diet and then we found there is not much to take with you when you’re active. Something tasty, small and durable. Not an avocado. I love them very much! But they are too delicate to take them with you when hiking. So we made our bars. Then people around us loved them. We always shared with our friends. One day we said: why not starting the whole thing commercially?
Who are Die Kraft des Urstromtals products designed for? (Who do they appeal to?)
Well, well, well…. haha! It is easy and it is so complex. Of course, our products are made for active, sporty people. When we started we were in our Cross Fit phase, therefore we designed them for this community. But frankly, our products fit for all who want tasty and nutrient food to take with you: whether you are a fire fighter or a student. Wether you use your brain or your body: you will need good food. That is what we offer.
What has the response been like since your launch and have their been any unexpected surprises?
Especially the Saber Toothed Tiger is our “most responsive“ product: you love it or you hate it. Our tagline, that we use in fairs on a backdrop, is “Sink or swim!“. That displays how people react on our bars. Most of them get really enthusiastic about the flavours and the variety of ingredients. But some, the conservative germans in particular, find the products too far away from what they know… That’s okay with us. We don’t do this to please the whole world.
Surprisingly, several people we did not know before came to us, attracted by our work, and offered us to join Die Kraft, to deliver work that we needed. That was an amazing experience. We had not ask for that. They came on their own purpose. And some even didn’t want money!
Today, for example, we have one person in charge of sales, one other responsible for SEO, one other helps us with the calculations and business forecast…. and we do pay them. ;-)
What sets Die Kraft des Urstromtals apart from other snacks on the market?
Ours taste better ;-) Try them.
We make bars from several ingredients including spices and that brings diversity into the taste. We do not chop all the ingredients into a brown paste so you can’t recognize what’s inside. Instead, we leave all things as large as possible. With every bite you will have another flavour. We love diversity. And we love pleasure. Eating should always be a pleasure.
What was the first item that you launched and how has your range developed since then?
We started with three different bars right away: the savoury, the fiery and the fruity bar. The fiery became “the stimulating“ after we discovered that most customers were deterred by the word fiery. Apart from that and some slighter design adjustments nothing has changed with these bars.
We are currently working on new products that will extend our range. Watch out! It will take another few more weeks, but we’ll come up with cool stuff.
If you could possibly pick, do you have a favourite product from your range?
Ivan: It’s always the one I am working on!
Janine: I love the fiery one… ups! Of course, it’s the stimulating bar …
What does a typical day look like at Die Kraft des Urstromtals HQ?
Our days start with a herb tea. Whilst having the first cup we plan the next hours. Then the orders from the last day are prepared to be picked up around 2 pm. Emails must be read and answered… After that it becomes chaotic… ;-) Everything may happen! We are constantly developing ideas and tastes. At the same time we do networking and sales, raw product and resource scouting.
What are your plans for Die Kraft des Urstromtals in 2015?
We want to spread over the german market and reach out for the rest of Europe… of course, we will not extend over the whole continent, but we have to start. And we’ll bring new products to life! But the most important thing today is THE MACHINE: We want a little helper for bringing our bars into shape. And we have chosen it already. Soon we will have it.