Toilet roll and ice-cream? The essential products you are allowed to leave the house for in Spain's coronavirus lockdown

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Toilet roll and ice-cream? The essential products you are allowed to leave the house for in Spain's coronavirus lockdown
People queuing and maintaining a safe distance outside a Madrid supermarket. Photos: AFP

The royal decree itself is vague about what constitutes "essential shopping", one of the few valid reasons for leaving the house during Spain’s lockdown.


Now, three weeks into confinement measures and there are daily reports of people being fined by police for being outside without good reason.

So the Guardia Civil in Alicante region published a list of what it considers approved essential products.  Here it is:

Fresh meat, poultry, game and rabbit, fish and shellfish, eggs and dairy are all on list. So too is cooking oil, cereals, fruit and vegetables. Tinned and jarred food is also on the list.

Also included on the list are sauces, sugar, coffee and other related products.


Ready meals and specialist diet food are also acceptable.

Water and ice is also a considered an essential, and so too is ice-cream.

It will come as a relief to many that alcoholic beverages ARE considered essential produce, as are soft-drinks.


Helpfully the list also included those products not for consumption that are still permissible to buy and these include medicines, cleaning products, personal hygiene products and sanitary items, plants, seeds, flowers and material required to grow them.

Those hoping to use the time at home to do some simple DIY projects will be relieved to hear that buying paints, varnishes, glues etc is also allowed so too are electronic, digital and computer items and accessories.

Music instruments and accessories also appear on the list alongside photographic equipment.


Fuels such as logs or gas bottles are also allowed.

Books, newspapers and school materials are also listed.

The Guardia Civil document also listed those services and considered essential under the state of emergency decree and that includes housing, utilities, health (including medical centres, pharmacists, and veterinarians) elderly or disabled care services, public transport, communications such as telecommunications services and the Post Office.

It also included banking, insurance and financial services as well as cleaning and rubbish collection services.


Those involved in emergency maintenance such as plumbers, electricians and other emergency repair services are exempt from the stay at home rule.

So too are launderettes and dry cleaners.

On Saturday Spain's prime minister, Pedro Sanchez, announced that the lockdown would be extended until at least April 26th even though it is beginning to show results and the rise in the number of infections and deaths is slowing.


UPDATE:  On Monday April 6th, several hours after this article was published Spain's Interior Minister issued a statement asking provincial police force departments not to dessiminate lists of products and services that were allowed or disallowed during lockdown.   





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