The majority of non-brewing pub chains restrict the beers which their pub licensees can buy to those on a centrally-supplied list. There are practical reasons for this, such as ease of control and accounting, but CAMRA claims that the system restricts access to market for small local brewers and leads to the same old national brands ending up on most bars.
This reduces consumer choice, restricts access to market for small local breweries and leads to economic and environmental impacts through 'beer miles' as centrally-supplied beers are shipped hundreds of miles, via distribution depots, before they finally reach the bar. This ridiculous situation has a severe impact on the viability of local economies.
If pub chains were more flexible and enabled landlords to buy a local beer, there would be no losers. Only those licensees who think they can improve their competitive position by stocking a locally-brewed beer would do so. It would lead to a more profitable pub, which offers a more interesting choice to customers, supports the local economy and increases profits for the pub chain.
Saving your Local Pub is a joint venture between CAMRA, Pub is The Hub and Business in the Community.
The Guide offers advice on how to stage a campaign, set up a steering committee, deal with planning applications and appeals, prepare a business plan and secure finance. It includes case studies on the community-owned Dykes End in Reach, Cambridgeshire and the Old Crown in Hesket Newmarket, Cumbria.