and the CANDY BAR


The D Bar is not identified as a chocolate bar. It, he says, is called a D Bar but nobody knows what a D Bar is. Everybody knows what a chocolate bar is. Therefore, why be mysterious about it.

From the start of its development, the K Ration contained a 2-ounce chocolate bar in the Supper unit. It was of the same formula as the 4-ounce U.S. Army Field Ration D:

The 2-ounce D-bar was practically a standard 4-ounce D Ration cut in half lengthwise. (Hence its 3 15/16" length.)

D bar 2 ounce

Early 3 15/16" long D-bar made by Hershey.

D bar (a)

An early 3 15/16" long D-bar with ingredients printed on the front of the wrapper.

D bar (b1)

An early 3 15/16" long D-bar, without any ingredients listed.

The size of the early D-bar was 3 15/16 x 1 1/8 7/8 inch. The lenght of the bar protruded past the biscuits and sometimes caused the cellophane bag to burst.
In March of 1943 the D-bar was shortened to 3
1/8 inch. Still being of the 2-ounce weight its new dimensions were not to exceed 3 1/8" long, 1 9/32" wide and 13/16" high.

D bar Nestle

The new 3 1/8" D-bar made by Nestlé. (photo: 1944Supply)

As with the D Ration, the 2-ounce D-bar was a bitter and hard chocolate bar. In the fall of 1943 a more palatable sweet chocolate bar was developed and replaced the less popular D-bar.
As with the 4-ounce D Ration a warning was added to the wrapper that during storage the chocolate might develop a white "blooming" on its surface due to warm climate conditions. It was reported from the frontlines (especially in the pacific theatre) that the soldiers  tended to throw away the affected bars. This blooming is, however, harmless and does not effect its nutricial qualities or taste.

sweet chocolate bar

A 2-ounce sweet choclate bar (3 1/8" length), with ingredients listed on its wrapper. Manufactured by Rockwood & Co. (photo: 1944Supply)

Sweet Chocolate Bar (a)

A 2-ounce sweet choclate bar (3 1/8" length), Note the warning about whitening on its side. (photo: 1944Supply)

Sweet choc bar (1)

The 2-ounce sweet chocolate bar (3 1/8") made by Nestlé/Peter, Cailler, Kohler Swiss Chocolates Co.*

Sweet choc bar

A more commercial design for the Sweet Chocolate bar produced by Rockwood & Co. (photo: 1944Supply)

Although popular with the troops it was found that the size was still too big and hard to bite through in cold climates. In December 1944 specifications notes that two 1-ounce sweet chocolate bars replaced the 2-ounce bar.

1 oz choc bar

A 1-ounce Nestlé's* chocolate bar. (From a mid 1945 Supper unit.) Two of these, or one package of caramels, replaced the 2-ounce sweet chocolate bar in the Supper units. (photo: 1944Supply)

In the fall of 1944 the caramels in the Dinner unit were replaced by a candy bar. It appears that the caramel nougat "Milky Way" bar made by Mars was used with the majority of the K Rations since the specifications were changed.

Milky Way 2

A "Milky Way" caramel nougat bar replaced the caramel candies in the dinner unit. (this one came from an early 1945 Dinner unit.) The words Torrid Zone refers to the fact that the candy bar has a higher melting point for use in the tropics.

An alternative to the "Milky Way" bar in some K Rations is the "Mars" bar made by the same company. This confection was also used in the 10-in-1's Partial Dinner Units.

mars bar

The "Mars" bar as it was included as a confection in late war Dinner units. Again note the words Torrid Zone superimposed on the Mars logo. (photo: 1944Supply)

The "Milky Way" and "Mars" bars were practicly the same candy bars that were sold on the commercial market during WW2. However, without the words Torrid Zone.

Milky Way ad

Wartime advertisement for the Milky Way bar made by Mars.

In a mid 1945 K Ration a chocolate fudge bar was found, but no name or manufacturer was printed on its packaging and no additional information is known about the bar.

fudge 3

A kind of chocolate fudge bar was used as aan alternative to the caramel nougat bar in the Dinner unit. No Printing or marking was found on the packaging and remains a mistery item. This came from a 1945 Dinner unit. (photo: 1944Supply)

In 1943 the Hershey Company came up with its own formula for a chocolate bar with a higher melting point for use in the tropics and promoted these under the name "Hershey's Tropical Chocolate". The word Tropical was printed in red. First a 2-ounce bar was produced and later a 1-ounce bar was also produced.
The ingredients were basicly the same as the D-bar, but sweeter. Later the formule was changed, omitting the oat flour, the word Tropical was then printed in blue. There is an ongoing debate whether or not the ® logo was introduced late in the war or after the hostilities while the K Ration was still in production.

Chocolate bar (b1)

Two Hershey's tropical 1-ounce bars were also used in mid-1945 K Rations.

*Nestlé and the Peter, Cailler, Kohler Swiss Chocolates Co. (hereinafter PCK) are two different company names. Both companies are from Switzerland and have been working together for years since the early 1900's.
It is unclear to me if the Nestlé chocolate bars are a brand of the PCK, or if PCK produced the chocolate bars for Nestlé, or that Nestlé produced the chocolate bar themselves using the PCK formula (or the other way round).