Greene King CEO Nick Mackenzie has described the uncertainty facing pub tenants face as “incredible,” saying “they do not deserve to be treated in the way that they have been by government.”

Mackenzie told MCA’s The Conversation said that following the tiers announcement last week, just six of Greene King’s 2,700 pubs were in tier 1, leaving the business “really angry and really perplexed”.

“I genuinely don’t think people in government understand pubs,” he said. “They need to get to understand what is going on day in, day out in our pubs, and what they do for communities.

“They need to get out and listen to what real people are saying on the ground.”

In the meantime, Mackenzie said the pubco is doing “as much as it can” to keep its tenants afloat and added that there was some hope to be taken from the sheer resilience of publicans as a group.

“They’re extremely resilient,” he said. “So, I think the message is, stick with it.

“If they can get through to March next year, then I think there is a much brighter future, and we’ll do all we can to help get them there.”