26 Aug 2020Small firms have urged the government to extend its Eat Out to Help Out scheme in order to continue helping thousands of small food and drink businesses across the UK. The scheme was announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak in the Summer Economic Update, and started at the beginning of August. It is currently set to come to an end on 31 August. Eat Out to Help Out provides a 50% reduction for sit-down meals in participating cafes, restaurants and pubs across the UK from Monday to Wednesday. So far, more than 64 million meals have been claimed since the launch of the scheme. Commenting on the issue, Mike Cherry, National Chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), said: 'The Eat Out to Help Out scheme has been an overwhelming success in getting people back on their high streets and in their town centres. We now need to see it extended to continue the critical support that it is providing for small firms as we enter a period of economic make or break. 'A nationwide one-month extension would go some way to helping many firms which are still only just about managing in this time of crisis.'