Chiquita

(CQB)

slipped Thursday after the company said North American banana prices dropped 2% in the first two months of the fourth quarter.

North American banana volume rose 9% in the first two months of the fourth quarter compared with the year-ago period, fueled by new business from several major retailers.

The Cincinnati-based company said European banana prices surged 13% in dollar terms in the same period, though the gain was just 5% in local currency terms. Core European volume rose 1%, overcoming a 16% drop in the 10 new European Union countries, large measure because of a quota in force there.

Chiquita dropped 12 cents to $20.56.