Philadelphia Weekly Staffer Going on Food Stamps

For a week, at least. As Newark Mayor Cory Booker finishes up his “food stamp challenge,” PW reporter Randy LoBasso will embark on his own week-long attempt to live on five dollars a day. Here’s LoBasso:

The holidays are coming up, and for lots of us, that means time with our families, a day or two off work and a general massive increase in food consumption. But for the 473,037 people in Philadelphia (31 percent of the city’s population) who rely on food stamps, things aren’t always so dandy. According to statistics by the Hunger Coalition, the average food stamp (now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) recipient in Philadelphia gets $5 a day to spend on food. Which, if I’m calculating correctly, is about two slices of pizza, and maybe a drink. Or, one latte. Or, 3/5 of a burrito. Or, one craft beer. Or … you get the idea.

With $27 of the $35 at his disposal, LoBasso has already bought “pita, bread, cheese, tomato sauce, pasta, peanut butter, jelly, milk, butter, oats, bananas.” Follow the challenge @randylobasso. [Philadelphia Weekly]