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Andrew Hadlock, an associate of Macey’s grocery store in Sandy, Utah, defeated 26 competitors from grocery stores nationwide on Tuesday to claim the Best Bagger Champion title during the 2014 NGA Show in Las Vegas.
Hadlock (right) received the $10,000 grand prize, a “Golden Grocery Bag” trophy, as well as the Pan-Osten “Best Bagger Golden Lane,” a special checkout stand to be installed in his store.
Cassandra DeMoura of Stop & Shop in Massachusetts came in second place, receiving $5,000, and the $1000 third place prize went to Jennifer "Mackenzie" Malicoat of Cosentino's Price Chopper in Missouri. Fourth and fifth place winners were Sarah Morris of Giant Eagle in Ohio and Dewayne Blair of Food City in Kentucky, respectively, who each took home $1,000.
Contestants were judged by speed of bagging, proper bag-building technique, weight distribution in the bag, as well as style, attitude and appearance.
"I'd like to thank all of our Best Bagger participants for another exciting competition," said Peter J. Larkin, NGA president and CEO. "Congratulations to Andrew, who showcased his superior bagging techniques, as well as his commitment to exceptional customer service."
Now in its 28th year, the Best Bagger Championship is the culminating event of a year-long nationwide contest. This year’s competition was sponsored by PepsiCo, Bunzl and Pan-Oston.
The National Grocers Association (NGA) is the national trade association representing the retail and wholesale grocers that comprise the independent sector of the food distribution industry.