Dole Europe is expecting to sell its operations in France and the UK before the end of this year.
The US-owned fresh produce giant said in a news release that it is in discussions with Compagnie Fruitière to offload Dole France in France and JP Fresh in the UK.
Dole, which has held a 40 per cent share of Compagnie Fruitière since the early 1990s, is keen to dispose of its French and UK operations as it believes that Compagnie Fruitière is better placed to service customers with bananas from West Africa.
It says any deal with Compagnie Fruitière would not affect its holding in the French-owned produce company, 60 per cent owned by the holding company of Robert Fabre and his family interests.
Compagnie Fruitière is Europe's leading supplier of bananas from West Africa, sourcing some 330,000 tonnes of bananas and 80,000 tonnes of pineapples annually. Both products make up the overwhelming majority of the 425,000 tonnes of fruit it markets annually, earning it some €300m in total sales.
Dole said a deal is imminent and should take place in the last quarter of the year.