April 24/Toronto/Prime Newswire -- SunOpta Inc. announced the appointment of Tony Tavares to the position of vice president and chief operating officer, SunOpta Inc., effective June 1, 2008. In this role, Tavares will report to Steve Bromley, president and chief executive officer, SunOpta Inc., and assume operational and strategic responsibility for the company's SunOpta Food Group operations and global supply chain initiatives.

Tavares brings over 20 years of food industry experience to this role with a focus on increasing organizational profitability in changing environments through a combination of innovative marketing, lean manufacturing and strong organizational development. Prior to joining SunOpta, Tavares was chief executive officer of Maple Lodge Farms Inc., a Canadian food company with revenues of approximately $550 million and extensive operations in fresh and deli meats, pet foods and feed milling. Tavares has also held a number of senior positions in the Canadian food industry including president of Maple Leaf Poultry, a division of Maple Leaf Foods and President of Tyson Canada.

Steve Bromley, president and CEO of SunOpta Inc., commented, "We are most pleased to have Tony join the SunOpta team. His extensive experience in the food industry will be a valuable addition and will be key as we focus on maximizing our strategic strengths and driving improved profitability and return on equity."

From the April 28, 2008, Prepared Foods e-Flash