The Asian Catering Federation (ACF), which represents the nation’s 35,000 Asian and Oriental restaurants, has attacked food Delivery platforms for “killing local restaurants”. 

The industry body said delivery companies “don’t need” restaurants on the high street, but would rather have a single dark kitchen cooking multi cuisines from an industrial estate suits their needs.

As a result, it said many once thriving high streets are “resembling ghost towns with boarded up windows and ubiquitous ‘To Let’ signs”.

According to the trade body, Just Eat Takeaway has recently ended sponsorship awards programmes for the ACF and several other hospitality organisations.

The organisation said its members have highlighted Just Eat’s “exorbitant” commission charges “with a focus on prices rather than quality.” It has called on customers to contact restaurants directly to cut out the delivery platforms.

Former restaurateur turned hospitality consultant Rajesh Suri, formerly of Tamarind Collection and Grand Trunk Road, said: “Delivery service platforms have become  multi million pound industries with huge profits, as our small takeaways and restaurants businesses faced with commission charges of up to 35%, are closing. This is driving down food quality as business owners are using cheaper ingredients in an attempt to make a profit.”

Just Eat insisted it has a strong record suporting the industry, and its services added value to consumers and partners. 

A spokesperson told MCA: “Just Eat is only successful if our restaurant partners are successful and we have a strong record of helping the sector prosper - in fact, along with our network of 88,000 restaurant and retail partners, Just Eat contributes £3.5 billion to the UK economy each year, supporting 100,000 jobs across the UK.

“We believe our commission rates are aligned with the value we provide to our partners - whether through access to more customers online that they may not otherwise have been able to reach, or our investment in technology and marketing to help businesses raise their profile, attract more orders and operate more efficiently.

“We’re committed to adding value to our partners’ businesses on a daily basis, and many grow and flourish through working with Just Eat.”