Independent retailers are anticipating a good rise in sales of home-baking ingredients now that The Great British Bake Off is back on TV.

Last week’s opening episode attracted 9.3 million viewers - more than two million up on last year.

The sixth series of the show was likely to spark an “unprecedented appetite for baking supplies”, retail research agency Conlumino said.

UK sales of home-baking ingredients and equipment have been growing steadily and the value of the market is expected to edge up by 7% to £1.9bn by 2019, buoyed by own-label products such as flour, sugar and baking mixes, according to latest Mintel data.

Richard Williams, owner of Williams Supermarket in Somerton, Somerset, re-merchandised his home-baking range and added new lines, including gluten-free baking supplies, in anticipation of a sales surge. “Home-baking is already popular here and it does tend to rise in the weeks during and after The Great British Bake Off,” he said. “The opening episodes have already attracted huge audiences and as a community retailer you have to be in tune with local people’s interests and respond to them,” he added.

Staff at The Shop at Stood Green, near Dorking in Surrey, were also anticipating an uplift in sales of ingredients such as eggs, flour and sugar, along with impulse sales of baking kits, thanks to a Bake Off-themed window display. “Shows like Bake Off provide us with a huge opportunity to grow sales and engage with shoppers,” employee Sam Long said.

Budgens has also extended its home-baking range to 250 products to cater for the surge in demand.

The second episode is on BBC1 at 8pm tonight and focuses on biscuits.