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Foodtech startup Maolac raises $3.2 million Seed round to create superfood with the health benefits of breast milk

Foodtech startup Maolac raises $3.2 million Seed round to create superfood with the health benefits of breast milk

The Israeli startup is using its proteomics discovery platform to create an anti-inflammatory product line to help athletes reduce muscle strain, and support active living and improved mobility of the elderly

CTech | 16:00  05.07.2022

Israeli foodtech startup Maolac has raised $3.2 million in a Seed funding round to develop technology to harnesses the benefits found in breast milk to create superfood by extracting the same proteins from bovine colostrum or plant-based analogsand. The round was led by investment platform OurCrowd and also included the participation of The Kitchen FoodTech Hub founded by the Strauss Group, The Food Tech Lab, VentureIsrael, NEOME, and Mediterranean Towers Ventures.

Maolac was founded in 2018 by biomedical engineer Maya Ashkenazi-Otmazgin, immunity expert Dr. Ariel Orbach, and Eli Lerner. Maya was nursing her first child when she thought of the idea of harnessing the health benefits of breast milk to create a superfood, which would be available to everyone.

Maya Ashkenazi-Otmazgin, CEO of Maolac. Maya Ashkenazi-Otmazgin, CEO of Maolac. Maya Ashkenazi-Otmazgin, CEO of Maolac.

Using computational biology, Maolac can identify and extract functional proteins from bovine colostrum. Maolac claims to also be the first organization in the world to create functional milk proteins from bovine colostrum, a nutrient-rich milky fluid that comes from the udder of cows in the first few days after giving birth, and are 95% equivalent to those found in human breast milk.

Bovine colostrum is currently dumped in drains at dairies the world over to the tune of more than five billion liters a year. The Israeli startup takes this waste and creates a formulated mixture to strengthen immune systems and help maintain a balanced digestive system.

Maolac will use the seed funding to build a state-of-the-art facility that will feature small-scale production capabilities. The facility will also be able to create analytics and samples for customers and clinical trials. The startup said it is in advanced discussions on joint development agreements with several leading Israeli companies in the food and supplements markets. It is also in talks with several of the world's leading dairy protein producers and global dairy, ingredient, and supplement companies.

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The first Maolac product line consists of a highly potent anti-inflammatory product for humans. Initially, this will target athletes to help reduce muscle strain and improve recovery time. The product line will also target the elderly, to support active living and improved mobility. It will form the basis for the next generation of gut health solutions for humans and pets to help prevent severe cases of gut inflammation.

“The new investment will help Maolac disrupt the global immune-boosting market,” said Maya Ashkenazi-Otmazgin, CEO and co-founder of Maolac. “The facility we'll be able to build will help introduce our human functional milk proteins into new segments and enable the product to target a variety of food products for daily consumption.”

OurCrowd CEO Jon Medved said: "The idea of transforming the first, nutrient-rich milk of cows that have just given birth into a source for human protein is a stroke of pure genius. Billions of litres of bovine colostrum are discarded each year. Maolac takes this waste and creates a product of huge potential benefit to millions at a time when the world is desperately searching for new sustainable sources of protein. The company is a perfect example of the circular economy in action."

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