Camra is calling for a consultation following the results of a survey that showed more than half of the public disagree with official health guidelines on alcohol consumption.

A YouGov survey showed 61% of those surveyed felt that moderate alcohol consumption could be part of a healthy lifestyle. In addition, 51% disagreed with the Chief Medical Officers’ decision that alcohol guidelines should be the same for men and women.

Camra, which has published the figures this week to coincide with the start of the Great British Beer Festival, is now calling for the Department of Health to launch a new public consultation into whether alcohol guidelines are fit for purpose and evidence based.

Chairman Colin Valentine said: “The figures we are releasing today, at the start of the Great British Beer Festival, show that government advice on drinking is at odds with common sense.

“If the government wants people to take the guidance seriously then it needs to present people with realistic and believable advice, which they can use to judge their own risk when it comes to responsible drinking.

“If the public feels, as our figures suggest, that the guidelines are not credible and lack evidence, the danger is they will increasingly just ignore them.

“There are decades of international scientific evidence showing that moderate drinking can play an important part in a healthy and happy lifestyle. We’d like to see that research reflected in a more grown-up approach to help adults understand the risks and benefits associated with drinking.”

Camra explained that scientific studies have shown that moderate drinking can protect against health problems such as cardiovascular disease, but it said this is ignored in the new alcohol guidelines.