Fresh Del Monte has issued a profits warning for 2004, dropping its estimates from the range of $2.55 to $2.65 a share down to $2.05 to $2.15 per share.

The drop in estimates has been attributed to weak banana pricing, lower melon profitability in the US and high fruit costs in Costa Rica due to difficult growing conditions. The recent hurricanes in Florida have also affected tomato crops.

The company noted its results continue to be strong in its fresh-cut and pineapple business.