While American shoppers lined up for Black Friday discounts, French activists staged a sit-in outside Amazon’s French headquarters and logistics center to denounce the introduction of the “shopping spree” from the United States,media reported. Dozens of anti-capitalist/environmental activists protested outside Amazon’s French headquarters in Clichy, north-west of Paris, and temporarily blocked the company’s two logistics warehouses in northern France and Lyon, before being evicted by police.
They denounced Amazon as a symbol of the arrival of “Black Friday” in France, which contributed to the rise of consumerism and, in turn, to the planet.”
European retailers have always followed U.S. tradition by using Black Friday after Thanksgiving as the start of the holiday shopping season. This trend first appeared in the UK around the turn of the century, when local chains responded to Amazon’s post-Thanksgiving discounts and spread across the continent. Over the past few years, French and German retailers have stepped up their involvement.
Julie Valette, a spokeswoman for Amazon’s French office, said protests had calmed down by lunchtime on Friday local time. “It has no impact on our customers,” she said. “
Mr. Valette also said Amazon had announced a climate commitment to achieve a net zero carbon target by early 2040. Amazon has also ordered 100,000 electric delivery vehicles and has pledged to use renewable energy 100 percent by 2030, she said.
Video circulating on Twitter shows police forcibly evicting protesters from an Amazon warehouse near Lyon.