Belgian beer maker Alken-Maes is to close one of its breweries, according to local reports.

The closure of the brewery in the town of Jumet comes almost exactly two years after Alken-Maes' management warned that it was looking to "emphasise the sales and marketing orientation of the company and to optimise the present structure".

Le Soir newspaper said today (19 January) that Alken-Maes, which is owned by Scottish & Newcastle, will transfer production from Jumet to its main site in Alken.

In 2005, the brewer spent EUR5m (US$6.5m) on the brewery to increase production at Jumet. The steady slide in beer consumption in the UK, however, has led to overcapacity at the site. The closure will result in 19 jobs, the paper noted.

Officials at Alken-Maes had not returned requests for comment as just-drinks went to press.