Canadian natural food group SunOpta has entered into an alliance with Specialized Protein Products (SPP) through its wholly-owned subsidiary SunOpta Africa.

The deal, announced today (1 December), will see SPP make and sell liquid and powdered soy ingredients and soymilk beverages in Africa and other international markets.

The deal provides SunOpta with an increased supply of soymilk products and a logistics network to help it to compete in world markets for natural and organic soy-based products.

The SPP facility, located in Potchefstroom, South Africa, is a manufacturing facility with capacity of over 200,000 liters of concentrated soymilk per day and capable of producing 20 metric tons per day of soymilk powder.

In a joint statement, Allan Routh, president of the SunOpta Grains & Foods Group and Peter Golbitz, director of international business development in the SunOpta Grains & Foods Group, said: "We believe this relationship will add value to the food and agricultural processing industry in South Africa and serve to improve quality and nutritional attributes of food products in the region.

"In hand with this, the first-class infrastructure, lower production costs and enhanced reach that South Africa gives us for exports should help make these products competitive internationally and allow us to continue to grow our global foods business," they added.

The SunOpta Grains & Foods Group have started the sale of liquid and powdered products from the South African venture and expect sales to grow over time to in excess of US$15m.