Purdue_Affiliated NutraMaize Is Working To ‘Make A Different Future’ With Orange Corn

Purdue University-affiliated startup NutraMaize is currently featured in a national advertising campaign presented by GoDaddy. Evan Rocheford, CEO of NutraMaize, appears in the campaign. (Image provided)

Purdue University-affiliated startup NutraMaize is featured in a current national advertising campaign called “Make a Different Future.”

The campaign, presented by GoDaddy, champions real customers, like NutraMaize CEO Evan Rocheford and the company’s brand Professor Torbert’s Orange Corn, driving change to “Make a Different Future” for themselves and for others. Following the challenges of 2020, the campaign states, “The future isn’t decided yet. It’s still ours to win.”

“We are so excited to be a part of spreading this message of hope for the future. As a company, we were founded on the belief that a better future is possible,” Rocheford said. “We are on a mission to improve the nutritional quality of common foods people eat every day, so to have a platform like this to tell our story is just incredible.”

NutraMaize was co-founded by Evan and his father, Torbert Rocheford, Purdue’s Patterson Endowed Chair and professor of agronomy, to bring the benefits of Orange Corn to the United States.

More than 20 years ago, “Professor Torbert” started naturally selecting varieties of Orange Corn to help alleviate malnutrition in sub-Saharan Africa as part of an international humanitarian effort called HarvestPlus.

The bright orange color of the corn comes from high levels of natural antioxidant pigments called carotenoids, the same compounds that give carrots their orange color and health-benefiting reputation. Orange Corn is grown in more than 10 African countries and is now available to Americans through NutraMaize’s line of premium milled products, including grits, corn meal and corn flour, marketed under the brand Professor Torbert’s Orange Corn.

“Most Americans are at an increased risk of losing their vision as they age because they don’t eat enough carotenoids, so Orange Corn doesn’t just have the power to save lives in Africa – it also has the potential to improve the well-being of Americans,” Rocheford said.

Through its partnership with GoDaddy, NutraMaize has launched its next phase with a new, leading-edge website (professortorberts.com), where consumers can buy Professor Torbert’s Orange Corn directly from the company. The website also features creative recipe ideas and detailed information about the origins of Orange Corn.

“Working with GoDaddy has been amazing. Not only are they helping us tell our story, they’ve also equipped us with the tools to take our online presence to the next level and reach more Americans who can benefit from our products,” Rocheford said. “When people think of GoDaddy, they usually think of domain names, but they actually offer a full suite of digital products designed to help businesses create more meaningful interactions with their audience.”

More information about the campaign can be found at GoDaddy. The national TV ad featuring Evan and Professor Torbert’s Orange Corn can be found here on YouTube.

The Orange Corn variety is licensed through the Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization. NutraMaize also received guidance from the Purdue Foundry, an entrepreneurship and commercialization hub.
OTC and the Purdue Foundry are both now located in the Convergence Center for Innovation and Collaboration in Discovery Park District, adjacent to the Purdue campus.

For more information on licensing a Purdue innovation, contact the Office of Technology Commercialization at otcip@prf.org. For more information about funding and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry@prf.org.