The NSW treasurer says he doesn't want people working on Christmas Day after Woolworths sought permission to have 3500 staff stock shelves and make deliveries on December 25.
The supermarket giant says it needs to continue operating in non-retail activities until 5am on Christmas Day to ensure its NSW stores are adequately prepared for Boxing Day trade.
While all other states and territories allow stocking shelves on public holidays, certain NSW retailers are required to apply for government permission to operate on restricted trading days such as Christmas Day and Anzac Day.
Dominic Perrottet says Woolworths' application to the industrial relations agency within Treasury is out for consultation.
"I personally don't want people working on Christmas Day," he told reporters on Wednesday.
"We've made that clear from the outset when we established the ability for retailers to open on Boxing Day, we've always said it's about choice, it's always up for people if they decide to work or not decide to work.
"Applications have been made in the past and they have been rejected."
Woolworths insists many of its 38,000 NSW staff want the opportunity to earn public holiday rates on Christmas Day.
"We fully respect the right of team members to enjoy Christmas Day with loved ones and never compel anyone to work who doesn't wish to do so," a spokesman told AAP in a statement.
Opposition Leader Michael Daley says there's no good reason why shops should be open on Boxing Day either.
"It's all about corporate greed," he said at a Sydney rally on Wednesday.