Consumers blame low supermarket prices and high rents and wholesale beer prices charged by pub-owning property companies for pub closures.
A survey on behalf of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) found the UK general public think pubs are being "forced out of business" by low supermarket prices, high beer taxes, and high rents and wholesale beer prices charged by pub-owning property companies.
Carried out by YouGov, the survey asked more than 2,000 consumers what they thought was the reason for recent pub closures. Some 82% said the cost of alcohol in supermarkets was responsible. High taxes, including beer duty, VAT and business rates had a large impact on pubs going out of business, 69% of those surveyed thought.
Figures released by Camra showed the rate of pub closures has slowed from 27 to 21 per week, but Camra chairman Colin Valentine said the rate of closures was still "alarming and unacceptably high".
"We've long campaigned for a fairer deal for publicans from the property companies which own their pubs and have seen recent success in the introduction of the Pubs Code and the appointment of a Pubs Code Adjudicator," he said. "People clearly agree with us that the level of tax charged on beer and on pubs is too high and needs to be addressed. Again, Camra and the beer and pub industry has seen some success in persuading the government to abolish the beer duty escalator and cut tax over the last few years, but Ministers need to go further in supporting the industry."