AUSTIN (KXAN) - For the next five days, people are encouraged to let their plates stay in their cabinets and dine out instead for the sixth annual Go Texan Restaurant Round-Up .
The week-long event encourages people to eat vegetables, fruits and meats cultivated from Texas farms and ranches.
"Not only does the food taste better local, it's very important to support the local economy," said Karli Isiyel, director of branding for Kerbey Lane Cafe. "It's great to have a relationship with your vendor to know where your food is coming from. It's a great thing."
About 400 restaurants across the state, including 86 in Austin, are participating in this event. The Department of Agriculture came up with the idea six years ago to help people recognize the flavor and nutrition of Texas-grown food and beverages.
This event has also become a fundraiser to help feed those who are in need. Restaurants will donate part of its proceeds from the week to the Texas Food Bank Network. In 2012, the money raised helped serve more than 100,000 meals.
"The Texas Food Bank Network thanks all of the restaurants participating in the GO TEXAN Restaurant Round-Up for their support of our efforts to feed the hungry," said Celia Cole, CEO of the Texas Food Bank Network.
She said 1.9 million children -- more than 25 percent of children statewide -- in Texas are at risk of hunger, threatening their ability to grow into healthy and productive adults.
"Our 21-member food banks distributed enough food last year to provide over 2.3 million meals and serve over 3 million needy Texans," said Cole. "Support from local businesses, like the GO TEXAN restaurants, helps us nourish needy Texans in every community across the state."
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