Novolyze raises €2.2 million to lower the risk of Foodborne Illnesses

Novolyze, is today announcing that it has raised €2.2 million. Of this total, €1.2 million came from private investors, family offices and business angels and the rest from public research programs and grants, including the French government’s Investissement d’Avenir fund.

Funds raised to further boost international expansion

Novolyze has offices in Europe and the United States and currently generates 97% of its revenue outside France. Since the Food Safety Modernization Act — possibly the biggest change to food safety regulations in 70 years — came into force in late 2016, the United States has contributed to 60% of company revenue.

The aim of Novolyze’s fundraising round is to speed up the pace of the commercial development of its Surronov® range of surrogate microorganisms in the United States, Europe and Asia. As they are non-pathogenic (similar to probiotics) and ready-to-use, these ranges of surrogate microorganisms can be manufactured in industrial quantities in dry form, providing a number of advantages over traditional methods such as:

  • The adaptability of the surrogate microorganism ranges to a wide variety of food products
  • A simplified preparation with dry-form surrogate microorganisms that can be used directly in factories from time to time to test or enhance manufacturing processes
  • Thermal resistances more closely matching those of the pathogens being mimicked
  • An optimum shelf life, with the product remaining stable for several months

Karim-Franck Khinouche, Novolyze’s Chief Executive Officer and founder, commented:
“We are delighted to announce today further investment from our historical shareholders and by new investors, who have seen our innovative approach and our growth potential in our target markets. Our ready-to-use products represent a major competitive advantage as we are able to offer effective control systems tailored to upstream risk processes in the agrifood industry and to enhance consumer protection even further, against the backdrop of the current focus on food safety.

Food safety: a major global public health challenge

Against the backdrop of a steady increase in foodborne illnesses, with over 600 million cases reported worldwide that kill 420,000 people every year[1], and increasingly tight regulations, food safety is now a major public health challenge. To enable food companies, laboratories and equipment suppliers to keep the lid firmly on the risks of microbiological contamination of their products and to offer consumers greater protection against the risk of foodborne illnesses, Novolyze has developed innovative products and services for the evaluation and validation of food safety control processes.

Novolyze’s innovative approach to controlling the risk of foodborne illnesses

Traditional sampling-based control methods are not sufficient to guarantee the microbiological safety of a processed food product because pathogenic microorganisms are often present highly sporadically so the probability of detecting them is extremely low using this approach. Novolyze has developed ready-to- use ranges of surrogate microorganisms geared to a wide variety of food products (milk powder, flour, meat, fish, pastries, juice, etc.).
These surrogate ranges are non-pathogenic microorganisms mimicking the behavior of food pathogens such as salmonella, listeria and E. coli. They can test simply and effectively the safety of a food product after the decontamination processes used in the agrifood sector, such as cooking, roasting, sterilization, pasteurization and disinfection.

[1] Source: World Health Organization

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