Asda has launched consultations about major restructuring which could put around 3,000 jobs at risk.

The supermarket giant has begun consultations with around 5,000 staff across the country with plans to move towards online grocery shopping.

Asda said the major restructuring has been driven by the “structural shift” towards online grocery shopping during the pandemic.

The grocery firm said it also plans to create around 4,500 jobs in its online operations this year and will look to hire staff affected by the restructuring.

Roger Burnley, Asda chief executive officer and president, said: “The pandemic has accelerated change across the retail sector especially the shift towards grocery home shopping and our priority is to serve customers in the way they want to shop with us.

“The last 12 months have shown us that businesses have to be prepared to adapt quickly to change and I am incredibly proud of the way we demonstrated our agility and resilience through the pandemic.”

He added: “We know that these proposed changes will be unsettling for colleagues and our priority is to support them during this consultation process.

“Our plans to transform the business will result in more roles being created than those we propose to remove and our absolute aim is to ensure as many colleagues as possible stay with us, as well as creating the opportunity to welcome new people to our business.”

Earlier this month, Asda said customers shifted their shopping behaviour to purchase more premium items following a tough year, boosting group revenues

The group’s Extra Special range saw sales jump by 30% in December as shoppers particularly spent more on meat, fish and poultry.

Rapid online growth also helped to push revenues higher during the period.

It said combined sales for its and platforms jumped by 76% year-on-year.