The Scotch Whisky Association has hit out at temperance plans unveiled by the Scottish government as probably illegal.
Ministers unveiled new plans which will set a minimum price for drinks, based on the number of units they contain, and a ban on promotions such as buy-one-get-one-free offers.
If the plans are approved, this will mean that Scotland will become the first country in Europe to fix a minimum price on drinks.
The SWA believes the moves are likely to be illegal under EU and international law.
They warned it may backfire by encouraging other countries to bring in "discriminatory" restrictions on Scotch whisky, damaging a £3bn-a-year export trade.
Gavin Hewitt, chief executive of the SWA said that Scotch whisky would be hit at home also.
He added: "In a challenging market, an additional 90p a bottle on
today's typical price will do nothing to support the communities that rely on the industry.
"We agree that attitudes to alcohol in Scotland need to change, but minimum pricing is not the answer. By proposing to introduce this
measure through secondary legislation, the Scottish government is preventing the full debate on the consequences of minimum pricing which such a damaging proposal deserves. "
In England, Westminster has put the brakes on anti-drinking proposals out of fear that the already struggling pub industry will be hit even harder during the recession.
But the Scottish Nationalist Party, which made the proposals, has vowed to push ahead with its temperance measures.