ATLANTA (AP) _ The largest bottler of Coca-Cola beverages estimates that last month's European recall of its products will cost $103 million, far higher than its initial $60 million prediction.

Atlanta-based Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. said Monday that the recall involved 17 million cases instead of the previously announced 14 million cases.

At least 249 people in Belgium, many of them children, were sickened June 9 after drinking Coke products. The health scare spread to several other European countries, which imposed full or partial sales bans on Coca-Cola products. The bans have since been rescinded.

Coke officials blamed the sicknesses on tainted carbon dioxide used in some of the products, as well as a fungicide on wooden pallets used to transport cases.

Shares of Coca-Cola Enterprises, which made its cost estimate after stock market closed Monday, fell 43 3/4 cents in early trading today to $30.31 1/4 a share on the New York Stock Exchange.

Coca-Cola Co. holds a 40 percent stake of Coca-Cola Enterprises, which owns and runs the two plants in France and Belgium blamed for the illnesses. Coke was off 93 3/4 cents at $62.12 1/2 a share this morning on the NYSE.

Industry analysts surveyed by First Call Corp. expect Coca-Cola Enterprises to earn 22 cents per share when it reports quarterly earnings July 20, excluding the recall's nonrecurring charge. That cost would reduce earnings another 16 cents.

Henry Schimberg, president and CEO of the bottler, said the recall would not affect financial results ``in the year 2000 and beyond.''

Over the weekend, Coca-Cola shareholders began receiving a letter from Coke Chairman M. Douglas Ivester reassuring investors that the company is committed to making quality products. Ivester's letter said the quality problems in Europe created an ``off taste'' and ``off smell,'' but did not constitute a health hazard.