CIDER production will be moved from Ledbury's Universal Beverages Limited to Hereford.

The Ledbury Reporter has been told the move to HP Bulmer's Hereford site will be made by December 2015, meaning "fewer jobs" are likely to be needed at UBL.

Packaging of the popular alcoholic drink will also be moved to the city from UBL.

Bulmer's owner, Heineken, says the exact impact on jobs at both sites has yet to be finalised.

A consultation process has begun at UBL's Little Marcle Road base.

Heineken says it has recently invested £58 million in the Hereford plant to "increase production capacity and modernise facilities".

"The investment demonstrates our commitment to securing Herefordshire for the long term as the global home of cider," said a Heineken spokesperson.

"This ambitious investment and modernisation programme will help us to secure hundreds of jobs in Herefordshire for the long term, and create some new jobs at the Hereford site."

He said the Ledbury plant would become a "dedicated fruit milling site".

Ledbury town and county councillor Liz Harvey said she was "disappointed" by the news.

"Clearly it's concerning on the jobs front,"she said.

"It's one of the major employers in Ledbury and I would like to see it continue to be a key employment site."

UBL was formed in 2008 with Heineken taking full control of it a year later.