Newark mayor begins food stamp challenge

Dec. 4, 2012 at 11:20 AM

NEWARK, N.J., Dec. 4 (UPI) -- Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker began his week of eating what he can by using only food stamps by posting a grocery receipt on his Facebook and Twitter pages.

From Tuesday until Dec. 12, Booker will eat only what he can buy with $29.78, slightly more than the $28 individuals receiving food stamps typically spend on average, in the food stamp challenge, ABC News reported.

Booker, known for his tendency to respond to residents through his Twitter account, agreed to the challenge after verbally tussling with others on Twitter over the need for programs such as the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, better known as food stamps.

Included on his crumpled receipt were beans, corn and fruit, but no meat products because Booker is a vegetarian, ABC said.

A study released Tuesday said nearly a third of adults in America went hungry or worried about someone they cared about going hungry this year.

News about Booker's effort spread throughout New Jersey's food bank community, ABC News said.

"People will certainly pay attention to what he has to say," said Rucha Gadre, director of programs and member services at a New Jersey food bank.

Booker said he would document his experience on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and WayWire, a video-hosting site he co-founded.

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