We continue our founder stories with a look at a company that is taking bio-tech to dairy farms to improve the dairy products you enjoy. Meet Louis Hui, COO and co-founder at Healthy Cow.
Tell us about your Company
Healthy Cow is an ag-biotech company for the dairy industry. We are developing alternative therapies for cows, so that dairy producers can rely less on antibiotics and hormones to produce more wholesome, natural, and nutritious milk. Our first product, ProPreg, is a specially formulated consortia of endogenous probiotics and essential prebiotics utilized to support and augment an optimal microbiome in dairy cows.
How did your company get started?
In 2009, a large scandal broke out in China where milk was contaminated with melamine. Melamine, which is a nitrogen-based plastic additive, was added to artificially boost the quality of milk purely for financial gain. The melamine accumulated in the kidneys of infants and crystalized. It caused severe lifelong health complications in hundreds of thousands of children because they drank this contaminated milk.
Instances like this had a major influence on us realizing there was a genuine need to improve the way we do things in food, and also in dairy. After years of development, Healthy Cow was started to take on this challenge.
We believe that Healthy Cow is positioned to enable dairy producers to improve the health of their herds. We are leveraging the unique science of the cow microbiome and metabolome to develop the next-generation of functional therapies to prevent diseases and maintain optimal health in cows. By preventing disease, we help dairy farmers rely less on antibiotics and hormones, and produce more wholesome, natural, and nutritious milk for our families and the local and global community.
Describe your current stage
We have progressed quite a bit over the last couple of years. We have collected validation trial data in over 700 cows which confirms ProPreg’s effectiveness. Additionally, we have developed the commercial formulation under good manufacturing practice standards and have proven its safety/safe use in cows through additional trials.
At our current stage, we are looking for pilot-customers, who are willing to work closely with us to share feedback and improvements so we can conduct an official launch next year.
What made you interested in joining the DFA Accelerator?
From my discussions with the accelerator staff, I developed the understanding that being part of the DFA Accelerator could really help Healthy Cow in many ways. At the same time, DFA would also be helping dairy farmers by vetting and supporting technologies and innovations that would benefit their members — it was a win-win situation.
The opportunity to interact with the Innovation team at DFA has been very beneficial.
DFA’s feedback, guidance, and suggestions are helping steer Healthy Cow in the right direction.
What are your goals in being part of this program?
Our goal with the Accelerator is to engage with DFA members to truly understand the importance of a product like ProPreg, how it would fit into their existing practices and collect other feedback. On top of that, DFA’s technical expertise has been helpful in guiding us on how to develop future studies and positioning ProPreg appropriately for dairy farmers.
The accelerator has also been very helpful in guiding us on how to tell our story and to engage investors.
What has been your biggest takeaway or benefit from the program so far?
Validation — Our time as part of the accelerator program has affirmed that ProPreg is a very interesting product and much needed in the dairy industry.
What has been the most exciting/fun/hilarious moment of the program so far?
Learning that Josh, CEO and Founder of Brooklyn Buttery, really enjoys/has an odd fixation on hot tubs.
What is your advice for entrepreneurs?
Just do it. Get good guidance. Get guidance/feedback from industry experts.