A French court has rejected a request from the CGT union that a Carrefour hypermarket near Lille be forced to close aisles selling non-essential products and it ordered the union to pay €1,000 compensation to the supermarket group.
The union had contended that keeping these aisles open put staff needlessly at risk of infection.
According to the ruling of the court in Lille, in northern France, seen by Reuters, a 23 March decree prohibiting French people from leaving their home during lockdown, apart for notably buying essential items, did provide a complete list of what was an essential item.
Thus, operating aisles offering products other than food, hygiene or pharma products was not illegal.
It was also not proven that keeping these aisles open increased risk for staff and customers following social distancing rules.
"We will try to find other loopholes. We are convinced that in the interest of staff safety we must shut these aisles," CGT union representative Amar Lagha told Reuters.
Carrefour, Europe's largest retailer, said it acknowledged the court's decision. The ruling comes as unions pressure companies that are still operating during the lockdown.
A French court earlier this month ordered e-commerce giant Amazon to restrict its deliveries to essentials such as groceries and medical supplies while it makes thorough safety checks.