Abolishing the beer tie would lead to further pub closures and the loss of traditional breweries, the Independent Family Brewers of Britain (IFBB) has warned.
The IFBB issued a 19-page document to the Office of Fair Trading in response to the Campaign for Real Ale's (CAMRA) super-complaint, arguing that removing the tie would "shake the industry's foundations".
Paul Wells, chief executive of Wells & Young's and chairman of the IFBB, said removal of the tie would also increase the power of global brewers.
"CAMRA has always supported the traditional brewery tie operated by IFBB members, and as they have observed, removal of the tie would confer greatly increased market power on the global brewers.
"As a result the regional diversity in cask beers the consumer is currently able to enjoy would be damaged beyond repair," he said.
The IFBB, whose 27 member breweries represent 4,200 pubs, told the OFT that the tie creates job by providing a low entry cost for tenants setting up in business.
"The tie allows the brewer to plan capital expenditure over future years in the brewing plant and the pubs, secure in the knowledge that there is a market guaranteed for the beers brewed," the statement concluded.
By Emma White
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