Britain's booze culture has once again been put under the spotlight this month with renewed calls from MPs for promotions on alcohol to be outlawed and strong cider and lagers to be removed from shelves.

Independent retailers we approached do not believe these measures will curb Britain's binge-drinking problem. They say that the solution to ensuring alcohol does not fall into the hands of under 18s is responsible retailing rather than putting limits on what products can be sold.

More than 70% of respondents say restrictions on the sale of high-strength beer and cider will not stop young people binge drinking, primarily because they will turn to lower-percentage alcoholic drinks instead.

Independents do not welcome the idea of restrictions on alcohol promotions, saying the ability to offer deals on alcohol gives them an edge over the supermarkets.

Most independents we asked - 95% - say they regularly run promotions on alcohol, with some saying that offers such as eight beers for £5 are year-round promotions that encourage regular business with their customers.

"Alcohol promotions on beer and cider are an important part of our business," says one retailer. "We can compete with the nearby Tesco Express by offering a wider selection of beers from around the world at more competitive prices. Many of our regular customers purchase beer that is on promotion."

Instead, independents favour proof-of-age schemes and many have taken a similar approach to the major multiples. Earlier this month the big four unveiled comprehensive plans to address Britain's booze culture. Tesco introduced a Think 21 proof-of-age scheme and Asda went a step further, pledging to roll out the Challenge 25 proof-of-age scheme to more than 100 stores.

Sixty per cent of the independents we approached already operate a Challenge 21 policy, meaning anyone who looks younger than 21 must have official identification to prove they are old enough to be served alcohol.

Those independents that don't run a Challenge 21 policy still stress they ask for ID from anyone who they believe is under 18 and regularly refuse to sell alcoholic drinks to customers.