Cibo Bars - Using local beef and simple ingredients to make an on-the-go meal replacement bar!
A Different Approach to Convenience
When Chelsea Luthy’s job took her on the road, she had a hard time finding food in convenience stores and gas stations that left her feeling good. She knew she wasn’t alone in her quest for a delicious, ready to eat, and nutritious option. The world is full of hard working people of all sorts who need good food, fast. People like farmers working the combine all day, kids needing a snack, student athletes looking for a pick-me-up, and those of us who just need a break from cooking. This is why Luthy created Cibo meat bars - to meet the needs and dietary considerations of a wide range of people.
Cibo (pronounced chee-bo) bars are made near Valentine, Nebraska from simple ingredients, no preservatives, no added sugar and are keto and paleo friendly. “The bar is made from local Nebraska beef, a fruit (blueberries), a vegetable (cabbage), plus my own spice blend. That’s it. It’s baked, and is kept refrigerated. People enjoy them cold, or they can be microwaved, grilled or heated up.” The beef is sourced from a local processor and the vast majority are from animals raised in Cherry county, Nebraska. The produce is sourced from the Cody-Kilgore student run grocery store, a venture that Luthy was involved in during her high school days.
Educating people and sampling out the product has been important to Cibo. They’ve taken the bars to farmers’ markets, sampled them at grocery stores, and collected valuable feedback along the way. Some of her most valuable feedback has come from her own household, “I have three little girls and they request it, and eat it. It’s important that this can be an option for kids. You can’t buy a kid’s opinion, they’ll tell you what they actually think.”
The Culmination of a Lifetime of Experience
For Luthy, starting Cibo has been a challenging and rewarding way to put her passion and experience to work. “As a high schooler I was involved in the Cody-Kilgore high school cooperative grocery store, which gave me a taste for running a business. My dad is a former rancher, so I was also raised with that type of entrepreneurship. I was in the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship program at UNL, and running my own business has always been in the back of my mind - this was the perfect opportunity to use all the skills and experience that I’ve gained from life, work and my community.”
The support of her community, family and friends has been indispensable as Luthy has grown her business. To her, a local business can be a powerful way to give back to that community. It’s for this reason Cibo has a Give Back Program - giving Cibo bars to a variety of people in the region. “Our Give Back Program is something I’m really proud of. We’ve donated bars to the Cody-Kilgore and Valentine schools, and to the senior center in Valentine. We’re also donating bars to about 250 displaced people from Ukraine who are being relocated to Norfolk," says Luthy.
For every three bars purchased, Cibo donates one bar to their Give Back Program, to be distributed back into the community. Shoppers can also make a donation specifically to the Give Back Program. Their donation will be used to purchase and distribute bars to those in need. Luthy sees this as a great opportunity for those who want to help out their neighbors, or make food a gift as a memorial to a loved one.
A Bright Future in Valentine
At the moment Cibo bars are being made in a commercial kitchen in a small town about 30 miles outside of Valentine, Nebraska. The Cibo team hauls their equipment, ingredients and packing machine to make the bars that are then ordered online and shipped to customers. While the commute is not a short one, renting commercial kitchen space has been a low cost, accessible option for this startup. Money saved by renting a facility has helped propel the business forward, and now they are on the cusp of moving into a new, permanent home, “We are finishing construction on a USDA inspected facility here in Valentine. This will allow us to sell our products nationally and in more local stores," says Luthy.
The facility in Valentine is projected to be completed in late summer 2022.
Learn more here:
Learn more and order at Cibo’s website : https://meat-complete.com/
Follow them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/meatcomplete
Email Cibo directly: firstname.lastname@example.org
Call Cibo: 402-389-1304