ByHeart founders and siblings Ron Belldegrun and Mia Funt said there have been significant modern advancements in nutrition science and breast milk research, which had not been incorporated into the infant formulas currently on the market – and the only way to truly innovate was to start from scratch.
ByHeart's team spent five years working with breast milk researchers to develop what the company said is the first infant formula in the US to include a patented protein blend that is closest to breast milk and the only infant formula in the US to include organic, grass-fed whole milk.
ByHeart said it is the first clinically-proven easy-to-digest infant formula with no corn syrup, maltodextrin, soy, or palm oil.
"At ByHeart, we believe that breast milk is nature's superfood – the world's most natural, functional nutrition – and that's why it's our blueprint. We brought together experts in every facet of breast milk research, baby health and nutrition because innovating in the infant formula category isn't about one ingredient, one benefit, or one expert," said ByHeart CEO and co-founder Belldegrun.
"To truly innovate to our standards, we couldn't rely on existing clinical research as the industry has – for the most part – for decades: owning our manufacturing and R&D, having direct relationships with every single supplier, and finally conducting our own clinical trial has allowed us to innovate, to control every ingredient in the formula, and to get closer to breast milk in ways that will be new to the market, all for the benefit of baby's foundational health and wellness."
By building its recipe from scratch, ByHeart said it was able to include lactoferrin and breast milk levels of alpha-lactalbumin (the two most abundant proteins in breast milk), as well as broken down proteins and an 80:20 whey to casein ratio that most closely mirrors colostrum, or early breast milk.
The patented protein blend was tested in ByHeart's clinical trial, which it said is the largest conducted by a new infant formula entrant in more than 25 years, which showed easier digestion, less spit-up, and softer poops. The trial was designed to meet and exceed the requirements set by the FDA.
"We want parents to have full visibility into their babies' nutrition from farm to formula and feel empowered in the feeding decisions they make. We called our company ByHeart because we believe parents know their babies' needs 'by heart' – and they deserve a partner that can support them with no-compromise products and parent-centric resources, so they can feel proud of the feeding decisions they make – whatever they may be," said ByHeart president and co-founder Funt.
ByHeart acquired and upgraded a manufacturing facility in Reading, PA in 2019 that is certified kosher, certified grass-fed, certified organic, and SQF-certified, and gives ByHeart the ability to accept fresh milk from local farms.
The company said it has also created the first all-metal, infinitely recyclable container (including a metal cap) in infant formula.
ByHeart's infant formula is now available on byheart.com, at $39 for a 680g can, the equivalent of 46 four-ounce bottles.