TORONTO — SunOpta BioProcess Inc., a business unit of SunOpta Inc., has been awarded a contract to supply its proprietary fiber preparation and pretreatment equipment for use in the production of cellulosic ethanol to an unnamed major ethanol producer in China.

For its part, SunOpta BioProcess will install its equipment in a planned cellulosic ethanol demonstration facility scheduled to be completed later this year. The plant will be located adjacent to an existing starch-to-ethanol facility and will use local corn stover as feedstock.

The contract is expected to generate revenues of approximately $6.5 million for SunOpta BioProcess.

“We are extremely pleased that one of the largest fuel alcohol companies in China has selected S.B.I. as its supplier of choice for fiber preparation and pretreatment as it expands its capabilities to include fuel alcohol produced from cellulosic biomass,” said Murray Burke, president of SunOpta BioProcess. “We look forward to working with our customer to help make the demonstration plant an unqualified success. As S.B.I.’s second major project in China, it represents another important step forward as S.B.I. establishes its business in this very important market.”

In 2006, SunOpta BioProcess announced it had signed a contract with China Resources Alcohol Corp. (CRAC) that involved research and development on cellulosic ethanol production.