Tesco, the UK’s largest grocer, has unveiled the 2019 intake for the incubator scheme the retailer runs in its domestic market.

The company set up the scheme in 2017 to work with smaller suppliers to try to meet changing consumer habits in the UK. That year the companies selected included UK snacks maker Propercorn, which this year renamed itself Proper.

Through the incubator, Tesco wants to “give a helping hand” to what it calls “a carefully-selected group of small entrepreneurial brands that have the potential to offer something different and exciting to our customers”.

In a statement, it added: “We carry out a thorough selection process which takes into account the latest customer trends. Once selected, the brands are offered a comprehensive year-long programme that includes a number of workshops run by our product team, tips and advice on incorporating Tesco customer insight, and support on marketing products more effectively. We also offer one-to-one support from our partnership team, so we can grow together and offer customers the innovative products they’re looking for.”

The latest intake features nine consumer-goods companies, including Mara Seaweed, a supplier of seaweed seasoning; Just Love Food Company – a company behind a range of celebration cakes; and Bio-tiful Dairy, the UK-based producer of fermented dairy products, which already has listings with Tesco.

Andrew Yaxley, Tesco’s chief product officer, said: “I’m thrilled to welcome an incredible intake of suppliers in 2019. From Just Love Food Company – offering the first nut-free range of celebration cakes, to Rascal and Friends, which offers a range of premium, unisex nappies, our nine new brands will all offer something different and unique to our customers.”