Israeli food-tech startup Remilk, a developer of animal-free milk and dairy, raised $120 million in a funding round led by Hanaco Ventures, a New York- and Tel Aviv-based venture capital fund.
Additional investors included US food tech VC firm Rage Capital, CPT Capital, a backer of Impossible Foods, plant-based egg company Just, and Israeli plant-based yogurt startup Yofix, and NY investment firm Precision Capital.
Israeli food giant Tnuva and German dairy company Hochland, both existing investors in Remilk, also participated.
Hanaco Ventures has also backed Israeli tree intel company SeeTree, plant-based meat company Redefine Meat, shared transportation company Via, and Lightricks, a Jerusalem-based software startup that makes photo and video editing apps.
The Remilk investment revealed Tuesday was the single largest in a cow-free dairy company to date, and values the startup at an astonishing $500 million, according to sources familiar with the deal. Financial daily The Marker reported a valuation of $325 million.
Remilk, founded in 2019, produces milk proteins via a fermentation process that renders them “chemically identical” to those present in cow-produced milk and dairy products.
The two entrepreneurs mapped out the chemical composition of milk, assessed the fat, lactose and sugar in the liquid, and determined that the key ingredient to making milk is the proteins.
Remilk recreates the milk proteins by taking the genes that encode them and inserting them into a single-cell microbe, which they manipulated genetically to express the protein “in an efficient and scalable way,” said Wolf. The product is then dried into a powder.