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SunOpta Exercises Option to Acquire Remaining Shares of Organic Ingredients, Inc. and Comments on Recent Share Price Volatility

April 05,2005
SunOpta Exercises Option to Acquire Remaining Shares of Organic Ingredients, Inc. and Comments on Recent Share Price Volatility

TORONTO--April 5, 2005--SunOpta Inc. ("SunOpta" or "Company") (Nasdaq:STKL) (TSX:SOY) today announced that it has exercised its option to purchase the remaining 49.9% of the outstanding shares of Organic Ingredients, Inc. (Organic Ingredients) of Aptos, California. SunOpta initially acquired 50.1% of the outstanding shares of Organic Ingredients on September 10, 2004, with an option to acquire the remaining 49.9% commencing March 31, 2005.

Organic Ingredients is a well established provider of a wide range of certified organic industrial ingredients including processed fruit and vegetable based ingredients, sweeteners, vinegars and others. Organic Ingredients sources and contract manufactures through exclusive arrangements with suppliers located in North America, South America, Europe and Asia. These exclusive supply arrangements enable the Company to maintain a strategic advantage in the organic food ingredient market, in terms of cost and availability of supply and positions the company to provide value added private label food products to key customers.

Steve Bromley, President and COO of SunOpta Inc., commented, "We have been very pleased with the performance of Organic Ingredients since our initial investment. Beyond strengthening our abilities in the provision of certified organic ingredients, this business has further positioned SunOpta as a key supplier to the growing private label healthy foods market."

In a related matter, Jeremy Kendall, Chairman and CEO of SunOpta Inc., commented on the volatility in the Company's share price which has been experienced over the past number of weeks. "We are very concerned with the recent decline in the Company's share price and are not aware of any recent developments or changes causing this decline. We are currently considering a number of options including a possible buy-back of up to 5% of the outstanding common shares of the Company, subject to receipt of necessary regulatory approvals. In the meantime, we are totally committed to building a strong, vibrant and sustainable business that will drive long-term shareholder value. We remain confident that we will continue our pattern established in recent years of growing our sales and profits on an annual basis."

SunOpta Inc. is an operator of high-growth ethical businesses, focusing on integrated business models in the natural and organic food markets. For the last six consecutive years, SunOpta was included in Profit magazine's 'Profit 100' list of the 100 fastest growing companies in Canada. The company has three business units: the SunOpta Food Group, which specializes in sourcing, processing and distribution of natural and organic food products integrated from seed through packaged products; the Opta Minerals Group, a producer, distributor, and recycler of environmentally friendly industrial materials; and the StakeTech Steam Explosion Group that engineers and markets clean pulping systems using patented steam explosion technology. Each of these business units has proprietary products and services that give it a solid competitive advantage in its sector.

    CONTACT: SunOpta Inc.
             Jeremy N. Kendall, Steve Bromley, John Dietrich,
             or Susan Wiekenkamp, 905-455-2528, ext 103

    SOURCE: SunOpta Inc.

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