Tesco, the UK’s biggest supermarket chain, now plans to extend its retail power outside the food industry by opening a chain of non-food stores.

The retailer plans to open its first of these as a trial store over the coming year, and this is likely to sell everything from clothes to CDs and electrical goods.

The company has frequently said in the past that it aims to be as strong in non-food as it is in food and it already holds 6.5% of the non-food market in the UK, which is its fastest growing area of sales, according to market share analyst TNS.

The latest half year results indicate that Tesco’s non-food sales increased by 17%, which included a rise of nearly 40% for clothes and 26% for home entertainment.

It also holds the biggest share of the UK’s food market, with a 29% share for the 12 weeks to January 2, compared to 26.6% this time last year.

Tesco, unlike many of its rivals, is expected to report good news when it announces its Christmas trading statement tomorrow.