The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) is once again championing the cause of Britain's 400 local independent brewers with its "Local Beer for Local Pubs" campaign.
The initiative, designed to get at least one locally brewed beer in thousands of pubs across the UK, received petition support from festival-goers at the National Winter Ales Festival held last week in Burton-on-Trent.
CAMRA's campaign is calling for pub chains to enable licensees to buy at least one beer from a local brewery of their choice in addition to the mainstream beer offering. As it stands, the majority of non-brewing pub chains restrict the beers which their pub licensees can buy to those on a centrally supplied list.
CAMRA claims the system restricts access to market for small local brewers and leads to a lack of variety and excitement with only the national brands available on most bars.
Mike Benner, head of campaigns and communications, said: "Over half of Britain's pubs are owned by huge faceless pub companies and most of them supply beer centrally to their pub estate which prevents local licensees choosing to buy beer from local brewers.
"This reduces consumer choice, restricts access to market for small local brewers 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."
CAMRA wants all pub chains to let their licensees buy an additional real ale of their choice from local breweries and have it delivered directly, not via remote distribution depots many miles away.
Mr Benner added: "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. It's a common-sense solution."
CAMRA claims that consolidation in the pub market is squeezing many brewers out, as they can't get their beers included on supply lists for large pub chains.
Mr Benner said: "As our pubs fall into the hands of fewer and larger pub companies, this situation can only get worse. Local Beer for Local Pubs is a simple solution which has to be preferable to legislation which could force big pub chains to give access to smaller brewers."