"180 Degrees Different”: Clif Bar’s Award-Winning, People-Friendly Bakeries

A different kind of company should have a different kind of bakery. Better yet, we have two.

Our bakeries in Idaho and Indiana, like all of Clif Bar, operate on an alternative business model based on five bottom lines: Sustaining Our People, Planet, Community, Business, and Brands. It’s all part of our ongoing commitment to making it good, from field to final product.

What do bakeries based on five bottom lines look like? They’re people-friendly environments in state-of-the-art facilities that make top-quality bars! Our bakeries have onsite learning centers that offer ongoing educational programs, from sustainability to ESL to best practices for baking. Hundreds of our employees commute in fuel-efficient hybrid and electric cars purchased through Clif Bar’s Cool Commute sustainability program. And, because Clif Bar is family and employee owned, all employees* will have an ownership stake in our company through Clif’s Employee Stock Ownership Plan.

Clif Bar’s award-winning Twin Falls bakery has been heralded nationally for its “green” design. On-demand conveyors, LED lighting, a reflective roof and water source heat pump help the bakery use about 20% less energy than most conventional bakeries. It’s also the only bakery or manufacturing facility in the U.S. that intentionally included biophilic design from the start, so people inside could feel connected with nature outside. How’s it work? Think 200+ windows, vaulted skylights, light-directing solatubes, and huge glass sliding doors that link an auditorium to an outdoor events space.

Our award-winning Indianapolis bakery has been celebrated for exceptional community service to local nonprofits (read more on the community service page). Indy also recently began a $10 million redesign to provide the team with an open, sunlit office area; a relaxing break area; and a functional GMP space. At the same time, we doubled the size of the original office area to over 20,000 square feet. “This is going to be the most people-friendly team member environment I’ve ever seen in manufacturing,” said Jeb S. on Clif Bar’s Engineering Team.

We asked some of our employee-owners in Idaho and Indiana, “Is Clif Bar different from other bakeries?”

“180 degrees different,” said Doug. H. “It’s truly a family. We make a product that is good for you. It’s sustainable and we do good work in the communities. It just doesn’t get any better.”

Thor G.: “The compassion for people here is the big difference. Considering this is a manufacturing plant there are a lot of similarities with my other jobs, but Clif Bar always feels different, in a good way.”

Vicki S.: "I have actually found a company where I can feel like a real person and not just a number on a clock card, a company where I want to achieve and do my best.”

Kit Crawford, owner and board member at Clif Bar, sums it up when she says, “We’re working to run a different kind of company: the kind of place we’d want to work, that makes the kind of food we’d like to eat, and that strives for a healthier, more sustainable world––the kind of world we’d like to pass on to our children.”

* Eligibility requirements in the U.S.: you must have been employed for one year, continue to be employed on the plan entry date (January or July 1), and vest before becoming an ESOP owner. Eligibility requirements vary outside the U.S. (for benefit and retirement plans); please check specific job for more info.