A West Australian company is hoping lupin flakes will be the next super food to take health conscious consumers by storm.
Farmers have long used lupins to boost nitrogen levels in the soil between wheat crops and as stockfeed.
The Lupin Co's Rod Birch grows lupins at his farm in Coorow, in WA's northern Wheatbelt.
He used to feed them to his sheep but has long believed humans should be eating them too.
"[Sheep] really do blossom and just put on really good weight gains and do so well on them," he said.
"It's a long time since I've run sheep but I used to look back at that time and think we're really just another animal and what a vital vegetable protein it is and just extrapolate that."
Not the type to die wondering, Mr Birch and his business partner David Fienberg are about to test his theory.
Mr Fienberg hopes their business — The Lupin Co — will be able to crack Australia's lucrative wellness market.
"40 per cent protein and 37 per cent dietary fibre, with very little carbs and very little fat in it, it's one of those foods that absolutely aligns with modern-day expectations of a changing diet," he said of the company's lupin flakes.
Mr Feinberg said the flakes can be used like quinoa in place of oats and cous cous.
"Instead of breadcrumbs with the carbohydrate and the fat absorbed as you do crumb, we use lupin flakes," he said.
The Lupin Co is not the first company to make lupin flakes.
CBH Group, the WA based grain co-operative trialled it but has now closed its mill.
David Fienberg was part of the CBH lupin business.
"As far as CBH are concerned, they're a great company, a great logistics company and marketing and so on, but they're a different company to what we're doing," he said.
He believes The Lupin Co's stronger focus on food, rather than bulk commodity exporting, will be a game changer.
"We feel the difference is that we're just so much more agile. We're so much more flexible, we all have skin in the game if you like."
John Noonan, a senior lecturer in agribusiness at Curtin University and believes The Lupin Co's gamble might just pay off.
"The markets are changing and the technologies are rapidly changing as well," he said.
"So those who have had a go in the past have been constrained by quality and quantity issues of the lupins coming in to the front end of the system and then also some technical challenges and some market challenges.
"I suspect as we move forward that some of those challenges may not be as large as what they were in the past."
The company is also planning to take its product to international markets, in particular those in South-East Asia.