SunOpta Acquires Value-Added Bulgarian Processing Operation

SunOpta Acquires Value-Added Bulgarian Processing Operation

Expands Presence in a Key Growing Area for Organic Products

TORONTO, Jan. 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SunOpta Inc. ("SunOpta" or the
"Company") (Nasdaq:STKL) (TSX:SOY) today announced that the Company has
completed the acquisition of a value-added grains handling and processing
facility located in Silistra, Bulgaria. The facility is currently a strategic
supplier for SunOpta, producing value-added sunflower kernel, oil and related
by-products.The acquisition further expands the Company's global sourcing
platform and value-added ingredient capabilities.

The facility, operated as the Organic Land Corporation OOD (OLC), was acquired
by The Organic Corporation B.V. (TOC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the
Company and a division of the International Foods Group.The purchase price
was EUR 3.2 million, inclusive of debt, and is subject to normal closing
adjustments. Key personnel will remain with the operations and the former
shareholders of OLC will be eligible for an earn-out over the next three years
based on specified EBITDA targets.The acquisition was funded via existing
credit facilities.

Silistra is located in north east Bulgaria, close to the Black Sea and the
Danube River Delta. Located nearby in Romania is a sizable agricultural area
that is protected and chemical free, with many growers producing organic
products including sunflower, flax seed, corn, barley and soy beans.The
Company intends to expand its presence in this region across these key product
categories and will also expand the facility by adding additional storage and
processing capabilities to maximize supply sources for value-added processing.

Gerard Versteegh, President of the SunOpta International Foods Group
commented; "The acquisition of OLC allows us to expand our product offerings
in both value-added organic sunflower kernel and organic sunflower oil. The
location is ideal for securing supply of organic raw materials for further
processing and will allow us to expand our capabilities into other organic
products that are grown in the UNESCO protected area within the Danube River
Delta. We would like to welcome the former employees of OLC to TOC and

Steve Bromley, Chief Executive Officer of SunOpta Inc. commented; "Consistent
with our strategy of becoming a pure play natural and organic foods company,
aggressively growing our value-added ingredients and packaged foods portfolio,
and leveraging our integrated platform, the acquisition of OLC expands our
value-added processing capabilities and increases our presence in a key global
supply area, while at the same time leveraging our integrated processing

About SunOpta Inc.

SunOpta Inc. is a leading global company focused on natural, organic and
specialty foods products. The Company specializes in sourcing, processing and
packaging of natural and organic food products, integrated from seed through
packaged products; with a focus on strategically vertically integrated
business models. The Company's core natural and organic food operations focus
on value-added grains, fiber and fruit based product offerings, supported by a
global infrastructure. The Company has two non-core holdings, a 66.2%
ownership position in Opta Minerals Inc., listed on the Toronto Stock
Exchange, a producer, distributor, and recycler of environmentally friendly
industrial materials; and a minority ownership position in Mascoma
Corporation, an innovative biofuels company.

The SunOpta Inc. logo is available at

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements included in this press release may be considered
"forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States Private
Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and applicable Canadian securities
legislation, which are based on information available to us on the date of
this release. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited
to, our expansion plans for the facility, our plans to increase our organic
sunflower kernel and oil business and our plans to expand into other organic
products grown in the region. The terms and phrases "intends,"
"will,""allows," "becoming" and other similar terms and phrases are intended
to identify these forward looking statements.Forward looking statements are
based on information available to us on the date of this release and are based
on estimates and assumptions made by the Company in light of its experience
and its perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected
future developments as well as other factors the Company believes are
appropriate in the circumstances including that all third party and regulatory
approvals and other conditions to completion of the sale transaction will be
satisfied or waived and that there are no material unanticipated variations in
budgeted costs.The Company makes no representation that reasonable business
people in possession of the same information would reach the same conclusions.
Whether actual timing and results will agree with expectations and
predications of the Company is subject to many risks and uncertainties
including, potential delays or inability to source organic sunflower and other
products, possible labour, construction or other delays or issues in
connection with the expansion of the facility, cost overruns in the capital
expansion activities and the ability to remain competitive and continue to
sell our products into Western Europe, as well as other risks described from
time to time under "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K
and its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q (available at all forward-looking statements made herein are
qualified by these cautionary statements and there can be no assurance that
the actual results or developments anticipated by the Company will be

CONTACT: SunOpta Inc.
         Steve Bromley, CEO
         Robert McKeracher, Vice President & CFO
         Susan Wiekenkamp, Information Officer
         Tel: 905-455-2528, ext. 103

SunOpta Inc. Logo
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.