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Imagindairy, a food-tech company creating milk proteins identical to those from cows, announces completion of a US$13mn seed round
The funding was led by MoreVC, a seed-stage investor from Israel managing US$275mn across three funds. Also joining this round is the Strauss Group, Entrée Capital, S2G Ventures; Collaborative Fund, New Climate Ventures, Green Circle Foodtech Ventures; Emerald Technology Ventures and Pierre Besnainou. The round included a pre-seed investment by Strauss Group, FoodSparks by PeakBridge, CPT Capital and Entrée Capital earlier this year.
Imagindairy is developing new technology that leaves cows out of the dairy equation. With natural precision fermentation, the company aims to create true milk proteins that are indistinguishable from the real milk. Imagindairy’s proprietary technology, based on a system and synthetic biology platform, allows manufacturers to offer cow-free, sustainable milk and dairy products with all the nutritional values of dairy milk.
Eyal Afergan, co-founder and CEO of Imagindairy said, “We are excited to share this news with our partners and colleagues. The market is eager to develop new dairy analogues based on our animal-free proteins. Once we reach commercialisation, more consumers will be able to enjoy eating animal-free dairy products. It’s hard for people to make big changes, especially when it comes to the foods they enjoy, but when there’s an alternative with the same flavor and experience that is more aligned to their values, it becomes easy.”
Imagindairy is currently collaborating with leading dairy companies, offering a complete range of dairy-free proteins. “Imagindairy’s innovative technology allows dairy companies to develop new products or reformulate existing products, without involving animals and with a dramatic reduction in carbon footprint,” says Glen Schwaber, MoreVC partner. “They have the technology to produce the dairy products of the future that consumers want today. We are incredibly impressed with the expert team and their strong research and development and scale-up capabilities—we’re proud to lead this investment round. ”
Imagindairy’s technology is based on 15 years of research led by its co-founder and CSO, Tamir Tuller, PhD and a professor at Tel Aviv University. The company’s mission was to create a commercially viable, guilt-free experience of traditional dairy products that the market seems to have a demand for. The company will invest the funds in expanding its facilities, increasing its professional team, and boosting itsresearch and development capacity to meet the demands of its partners.
According to Imagindairy, their system feeds microorganisms instead of cows and the select microorganisms the company employs are up to 20 times more efficient than cows at converting feed into food. This offers food system resilience, allows for complete sustainability, preserves the natural ecosystem, and promotes animal welfare. It also eliminates the greenhouse gas emissions produced by dairy cows. The result is said to be highly functional milk proteins that taste great and have the same texture, flavour and nutritional value as milk from cows.