Iowan Dwayne Campbell Captures National Best Bagger Title

 

Iowan Dwayne Campbell Captures National Best Bagger Title

Photo: (left to right) IGIA President Michelle Hurd, Chanelle Campbell and National Best Bagger Champion Dwayne Campbell.

SAN DIEGO – In a contest to find the best grocery bagger in the nation, Iowan Dwayne Campbell emerged victorious. Campbell, who works at the Hy-Vee store at SE 14th Street and Park Avenue in Des Moines, was named the 2019 National Best Bagger Champion at the National Best Bagger Competition hosted by the National Grocers Association, Monday, February 25, at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego.

Lights flashed, music played loudly and the crowd cheered even louder as the competition heated up while Iowan Dwayne Campbell did his best to remain calm. That was the scene as Campbell defeated 22 other best baggers from across the country to claim the National Best Bagger title, a trophy and $10,000.

“I was nervous beforehand,” said Campbell via cell phone conversation earlier this week, “I’ve never been under that kind of pressure before but I had a lot of people cheering me on, my wife, all my friends and co-workers, my parents, my in-laws. I had the support of a lot of people at Hy-Vee’s corporate office. It was truly an amazing and unforgettable experience.”

When asked about his preparation for the competition, he responded, “I practiced every day leading up to the contest, at work and at home. I went over the rules and I tried to prepare mentally.”

Campbell outperformed 22 other baggers from around the country who first had to win competitions in their home states before earning the right to compete at the National level. All contestants bagged identical grocery orders of approximately 35 commonly purchased items into three reusable grocery bags and were judged on speed of bagging, proper bag-building technique, weight distribution among bags, as well as style, attitude and appearance.

According to Campbell, it was “incredibly exciting” as emcee Akbar Gbajabiamila, co-host of NBC’s American Ninja Warrior, proclaimed him the winner.

“It’s been a long haul making it through the Hy-Vee competition, then winning Iowa’s Best Bagger contest at the Iowa State Fair and now this competition,” explained Campbell. “I’m very proud and happy to be bringing home this honor for everyone who has supported me and for Hy-Vee.”

Campbell started working for Hy-Vee in 2005 in the Chinese food department. He moved up front to check and bag in 2009. Currently he has nine years of bagging experience and works as assistant manager at the Park Avenue Hy-Vee store, where his duties still include bagging groceries every day.

Campbell’s win is the second for Iowa in as many years. Iowan Trevor DeForest, who works at the Fareway store in Maquoketa, was named National Best Bagger Champion in 2018. Campbell is the seventh Iowan to earn the honor since the competition began in 1987.

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Press Contacts: Ann Seuferer, Communications Specialist | Iowa Grocery Industry Association | 515-270-2628 or 800-383-3663 | anns@iowagrocers.com

Photo and video available upon request. To set up an interview or bagging challenge with Dwayne Campbell, please contact Josh Fisher at Hy-Vee, Inc. at 515-559-5784 or jofisher@hy-vee.com.

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