Macey’s Finishes 1st at NGA’s Best Bagger Championship

Karli West wins annual event that spotlights talented, speedy front end workers
Lynn Petrak, Progressive Grocer
Best Bagger NGA
NGA presented a $10,000 cash prize to Karli West of Macey’s after being crowned the winner of the annual Best Bagger Championship on Feb. 27.

It was a showdown in the Wild West, as seasoned grocery baggers went head to head and bag to bag at The NGA Show in Las Vegas this week. The aptly named Karli West of Macey's in Utah took home the top prize in NGA’s annual Best Bagger Championship, held in front of an enthusiastic audience on Feb. 27. (For a glimpse of the competition, scroll below for NGA's Instagram video.) 

JDana Sparks of United Supermarkets in Texas took second, followed by Brennan Davenport of Publix Super Markets in Georgia, Nathan Brtek of Lou's Thrifty Way in Nebraska and Nolan McGregor of Fareway Stores in Iowa. West will receive a $10,000 cash prize, while the first runner up wins $5,000 and second, third and fourth runner ups will take home $1,000 each.

[Read more: "Isom IGA’s Gwen Christon Named WGA Woman of the Year"]

Sponsored by PepsiCo, the Best Bagger Championship is a highlight of The NGA Show that brings together independent grocers, wholesalers, manufacturers and service providers from around the country. First launched in 1987, the event is actually a yearlong competition in which baggers strive to make the final round at the convention. Baggers are evaluated on factors including speed, technique, weight distribution between bags, style, attitude and appearance.

“The nation’s best baggers competed last night in the Best Bagger Championship at Caesars Forum in Las Vegas during The NGA Show, showcasing the important customer service skill of bagging in a great atmosphere with family and friends in attendance,” said Greg Ferrara, president and CEO of Washington D.C.-based NGA. “I congratulate Karli on her victory and I’m already looking forward to seeing the baggers compete again next year at the 2024 NGA Show back in Vegas.”

Employee-owned and -operated Publix has close to 1,300 supermarkets. The Lakeland, Fla.-based company is No. 12 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. Family-owned Fareway employs more than 12,000 associates in its 130-plus stores. The Boone, Iowa-based company is No. 77 on The PG 100. PG also named Fareway one of its 2023 Outstanding Independents

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