Dole Food Co. has closed three asset sale transactions in the last month that have generated around US$100m in cash.

The transactions, part of Dole's previously announced asset sale programme, have been used to pay down the company's $34m term bank debt and $66m revolving bank debt.

These sales bring Dole's total asset sales for 2008 to date to around $135m.

"Dole is pleased to have completed the three all-cash asset sales at favourable prices," said David DeLorenzo, president and CEO of Dole. "We anticipate that we will complete additional significant asset sales in 2008, the proceeds of which will also be used to pay down debt."

Recent asset sales included around 2,000 of Dole's 28,000 acres on the island of Oahu, Hawaii, the Miami headquarters building of Dole's Fresh Flowers division, and around 4,300 acres of California orchards that had been owned by entities in which Dole had a combined stake of about 65%.

Dole, with 2007 net revenues of $6.93bn, produces and markets fresh fruit and vegetables.