In line with our ‘Dine Out’ theme, we decided to ask Mayor Ras Baraka his views on food.

We’ve heard that you’re a fan of juicing. What’s your favorite juice concoction?

My favorite juice smoothie is called the “Mayor’s Special” and it was created by the 4 Seasons Café on West Market Street. It consists of spinach, mango, banana, pineapple, whey protein and peanut butter. Try it some time!

Are there any foods you limit or avoid in your own diet?

I do not consume sodas or red meats in my diet. I eat mostly seafood and vegetables.

What is the City of Newark doing to promote healthy eating among its residents?

We have moved to address the slim grocery choices in Newark by encouraging urban farming, both as a business and a community-based activity, and now by proudly hosting the world’s largest vertical indoor farm, AeroFarm. We have welcomed health-oriented grocers like Whole Foods to our downtown, and most importantly, we’ve recognized the importance of public health and made it a safety issue. We have tasked our re-named Department of Health and Community Wellness with leading the charge in the effort to get our residents to replace sugary snacks and fried foods with affordable fruit snacks and baked foods. We will win the struggle to slim Newark’s waistline and create a healthier city for all.

Harry Potter at NJPAC