Around 200 jobs are potentially at risk after Elisabeth the Chef announced it is to create a new facility in Leamington Spa, which will result in the merging of staff from two existing sites.

The bakery and dessert manufacturer plans to create a new facility next to its head office, which would become the sole dessert production site for the business.

The transfer of dessert operations from its site in Southam and in St Mary’s Road, Leamington, to the new facility is expected to be completed by the middle of next year, said a spokesperson for the firm.

Currently around 100 full-time staff are employed at its Southam premises and around 250 full-time at its site in St Mary’s, with additional agency and temporary staff employed in periods of peak demand.

The company has confirmed that the new site will only require around 150 staff, meaning a potential 200 or more job losses.

“The skills required to operate the new site will be different to those needed for the existing factories, so a consultation process is required to check which of the current employees are able and willing to transfer across, with training if necessary,” said the spokesperson.

Consultations with employees are due to begin this month and are expected to last up to 90 days, with no redundancies expected before spring 2010.

Operations at the company’s Broadheath bakery site in Worcester are said to be largely unaffected by the plans, with a £3m investment planned for the coming 15 months.

The business, which has a turnover of around £90m, was acquired last year by family-owned French dairy concern, The Senoble Group, and the multi-million pound investment is planned to expand its desserts manufacturing capability.

Chief executive Bill Haywood said the company will be looking to add new lines, with a Continental influence, and is looking to increase the shelf-life of its range.