Food Channel Finds is our way of bringing information and opinion on some of the latest products to hit the market. These might be interesting food items or equipment seen as we walk a trade show, on a grocery shelf, at a food event, or often, from press releases enticing us to put them to the test to see how they deliver.
OHi Superfood Bars
Our team recently tried a variety of superfood bars from California-based OHi Food Company. OHi produces a full line of refrigerated bars that are nutrient dense with a variety of organic and superfood ingredients. The company is on-trend with the desires of today’s nutrient-smart consumers, especially Millennials and Gen Z.
These generations, especially, look beyond a company’s products to its base philosophy, how it treats employees and the environment. Transparency with ingredients and processing is extremely important to them. These traits will influence purchase decisions and swing toward a company that meets these standards, when compared to companies that don’t. And yes, they’re willing to pay more to support these brands.
OHi’s philosophy is to provide next-generation on-the-go superfood bars that are nutritious and flavorful, while being conscious and transparent about ingredients and manufacturing processes. The aspirational goals are to elevate customers through simple food and simple kindness. The word OHi means “to gather” in Hawaiian and “to rise and elevate” in Maori.
The company’s founder grew up using energy bars for nutritional support of her active lifestyle, and had a desire to create bars that were made with fresh ingredients and fewer preservatives. That’s why OHi’s bars need to be refrigerated. They were first sold to local Maui farmers markets, grew in popularity, and extended to the mainland. You’ll find them at specialty- and natural-foods stores like Whole Foods, Gelsen’s and Wegmans, and soon in Publix and Safeway stores as well. You can also purchase online.
About The Products
We took the opportunity to sample the full line to better understand the philosophy, and ingredients behind the products. OHi currently offers five bars: Coconut Macadamia, Almond Crunch, Super Green, Double Chocolate and the new Peanut Butter. The bars come in boxes of 8 (1.8 ounce) bars that retail for $24.99. A variety pack is also available.
OHi is all about ingredients, taste and texture. They use high-quality, health-forward ingredients like organic cacao butter, almonds, macadamia nuts, and a variety of organic seeds. These are combined with some very on-trend nutrient-rich organically grown ingredients including Chlorella, Reishi mushrooms, Spirulina, Maca and mesquite.
All varieties of the bars are non-GMO project verified, predominantly Paleo, low glycemic and free of grains, soy, refined sugars and dairy. They are certified vegan and gluten-free.
What Did We Think?
Honestly, not being a heavy energy or nutrition bar consumer, myself, I was most concerned with the Super Green, and yet found it to be my favorite, along with the Double Chocolate (go figure).
Because I’m not the target audience, I shared with several members of our editorial, culinary and insights teams to get broad opinions. Several squarely fit within the Millennial generation.
The bars are all substantial in terms of ingredients, mouth feel and feeling like you’ve eaten a substantial bar when you’re done. They’re chewy as opposed to crunchy and many of us preferred to let them warm a bit before eating; however, many preferred them right out of the refrigerator.
Double Chocolate was a pretty uniform favorite. Ingredients include almonds; a variety of organic ingredients including coconut nectar, a seed blend (pumpkin, chia and flax), cacao nibs, reishi mushroom powder and Himalayan salt among others.
Coconut Macadamia was perhaps the richest in complexities of flavor. It’s made with Macadamia nuts, almonds, the organic seed blend, as well as coconut, mulberries, cacao nibs and maca.
Super Green turned out to be a favorite among many of us. They’re made with almonds, the organic seed blend (with the addition of hemp and pumpkin seeds), mulberries, goji berries, cacao nibs and spirulina.
Almond Crunch was a favorite to some, but not to everyone. It truly depends on your individual flavor-blend preferences. These contain almonds, the same seed blend as Super Green, and other organic ingredients including coconut nectar, cacao butter, goji berries and coconut.
For Peanut Butter fans, the newest bar has organic peanuts, seed blends and cacao butter, as well as organic mesquite powder to give it a slightly smoky after-taste.
If you lead an active lifestyle and are looking for a next-generation superfood bar, you’ll love OHi. Even for those of us who don’t necessarily fit into the more active-lifestyle category, they were enjoyable. And the flavor preferences were very individualized. Some samplers squarely favored some blends others did not. And vice-versa. I recommend you try a variety pack first, to gauge which flavors you enjoy most.