Troubled Dutch retail Ahold has announced it is to cut 440 jobs at its Dutch supermarket subsidiary Albert Heijn.

Ahold said 250 jobs would go at Albert Heijn’s head office, while 190 jobs in logistics and distribution operations would also be cut.

A spokesman for the retail giant said the reorganisation would result in a one-off charge of €25m (US$27.1m). The reorganisation is expected to be completed by 31 December 2004.

“Following the upward trend of 2002, Dutch consumers are spending significantly less in 2003,” the retailer was quoted by Reuters as saying. “Price has become a much more important factor. As the country’s leading service supermarket chain, Albert Heijn has felt the impact of its customers spending less per store visit.”

Ahold said Albert Heijn’s market share dropped to 26.7% in the first half, compared to 27.9% a year earlier.