updated 12/14/2010 7:47:14 AM ET 2010-12-14T12:47:14

TORONTO, Dec. 14, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SunOpta Inc. ("SunOpta" or the "Company") (Nasdaq:STKL) (TSX:SOY) today announced that its indirect wholly-owned subsidiary SunOpta Fruit Group Inc. ("SunOpta Fruit Group") has completed the previously announced acquisition of the assets and business of Edner of Nevada, Inc. ("Edner").

Edner produces a wide variety of nutritious portable foods such as nutrition bars and grains and fruit based snack bars serving the fast growing wholesome and convenient healthy snacks category from its 104,000 square foot facility, located in Carson City, Nevada. The completion of the acquisition of Edner will enable SunOpta to extend the breadth of its healthy snack offerings via the introduction of innovative new products utilizing the capabilities that exist within Edner. 

Steve Bromley, President and Chief Executive Officer of SunOpta Inc. commented, "We are pleased to have closed this acquisition as it expands our capabilities in the rapidly growing healthy convenience category. We look forward to working with the Edner team and welcome them to SunOpta."

About Healthy Fruit Snacks

Healthy Fruit Snacks is an operating division within SunOpta Fruit Group. The division produces natural and organic fruit snacks and operates from a processing facility in Omak, Washington. Its products include all natural fruit bars, ropes, twists and other shapes made primarily from apple puree and coming in a variety of flavors. In the last several years Omak has expanded significantly by adding capacity for an additional 140 million units per year, effectively doubling their throughput.

About SunOpta Inc.

SunOpta Inc. is a leading global company focused on natural, organic and specialty foods and natural health 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 66.4% ownership position in Opta Minerals Inc. (TSX:OPM), 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 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=3958

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. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, management's expectations regarding the combination of the business, revenue and earnings expectations of the acquired business, the growth of the portable foods industry and the market position of the combined business. Terms and phrases such as "fast growing", "opportunity", 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. Whether actual timing and results will be consistent with expectations and predications of the Company is subject to many risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the company's expectations and predictions, including the success of the combination of the businesses and demand for nutritious portable foods as well as those risks detailed under "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q (available at www.sec.gov ). Consequently 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 realized.

CONTACT:  SunOpta Inc.
          Steve Bromley, President & CEO
          Eric Davis, Vice President & CFO
          Tony Tavares, Vice President & COO
          Susan Wiekenkamp, Information Officer
            905-455-2528, ext 103
            susan.wiekenkamp@sunopta.com
          www.sunopta.com

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