Swiss food giant Nestlé is planning to axe up to 154 jobs out of 513 in the frozen foods division of its Beauvais plant located 50 miles north of Paris.

The division makes ready-made meals such as fish-in-sauce shepherd’s pie and lasagne, demand for which Nestlé has seen decline in the past couple of years.

The jobs will be shed through early retirements and the transfer of staff to other posts at the Beauvais plant, where Nestlé employs a total of 1,000 staff, and also to other plants in France.

Nestlé underlined its strategic commitment to the frozen foods segment but said it had to downsize in order to remain competitive.