The Reading / Listening - Potato Shortage - Level 1

Europe grew a lot fewer potatoes this summer. This means French fries will be up to 3cm shorter than usual. Europe had a very hot summer. It had a long heatwave, record high temperatures and very little rain, so farmers grew 25 per cent fewer potatoes. A potato growers' spokesman in Belgium said this increased potato prices. It also made the average size of potatoes smaller. Smaller potatoes means French fries will be shorter.



The potato shortage is a hot topic in Belgium. Fries are Belgium's national dish. There are over 5,000 shops there that sell fries. Belgians call them "Belgian fries" because they say the fry was invented in Belgium. Belgium exports lots of frozen fries. The spokesman explained why fries would be shorter. He said long fries of 8 to 9 cm need potatoes with a diameter of more than 50mm. This summer's smaller potatoes means fries will be shorter.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Potato Shortage - Level 0 Potato Shortage - Level 2   or  Potato Shortage - Level 3

Sources
  • https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/experience/2018/09/23/french-fries-likely-lose-inch-europe/1406665002/
  • https://potatonewstoday.com/2018/09/21/british-chips-to-become-much-shorter/
  • https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/09/18/british-chips-3cm-shorter-usual-belgian-potatoes-hit-dry-hot/


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. French fries will be up
  2. Europe had a very
  3. record high
  4. very little
  5. farmers grew 25 per cent
  6. A potato growers'
  7. this increased potato
  8. the average size
  1. rain
  2. prices
  3. hot summer
  4. of potatoes
  5. temperatures
  6. fewer potatoes
  7. spokesman
  8. to 3cm shorter

Paragraph 2

  1. The potato shortage is a hot
  2. Fries are Belgium's national
  3. Belgium exports lots
  4. explained why fries
  5. long fries of
  6. a diameter
  7. This summer's smaller
  8. fries will be
  1. dish
  2. potatoes
  3. 8 to 9 cm
  4. shorter
  5. of frozen fries
  6. would be shorter
  7. topic in Belgium
  8. of more than 50mm

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Europe (1) ___________________ fewer potatoes this summer. This means French fries (2) ___________________ to 3cm (3) ___________________. Europe had a very hot summer. It had a long heatwave, record high temperatures and (4) ___________________, so farmers grew 25 per cent fewer potatoes. A potato growers' spokesman in Belgium said this (5) ___________________. It also made the average size of potatoes smaller. Smaller potatoes means French fries (6) ___________________.

The potato shortage is (7) ___________________ in Belgium. Fries are Belgium's national dish. (8) ___________________ 5,000 shops there that sell fries. Belgians call them "Belgian fries" because they say the fry (9) ___________________ Belgium. Belgium exports lots (10) ___________________. The spokesman explained why fries would be shorter. He said long fries of 8 to 9 cm need potatoes with (11) ___________________ more than 50mm. This summer's smaller potatoes (12) __________________ be shorter.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

Europegrewalotfewerpotatoesthissummer.ThismeansFrenchfrieswi
llbeupto3cmshorterthanusual.Europehadaveryhotsummer.Ithadal
ongheatwave,recordhightemperaturesandverylittlerain,sofarmersg
rew25percentfewerpotatoes.Apotatogrowers'spokesmaninBelgium
saidthisincreasedpotatoprices.Italsomadetheaveragesizeofpotatoe
ssmaller.SmallerpotatoesmeansFrenchfrieswillbeshorter.Thepotat
oshortageisahottopicinBelgium.FriesareBelgium'snationaldish.Ther
eareover5,000shopstherethatsellfries.Belgianscallthem"Belgianfrie
s"becausetheysaythefrywasinventedinBelgium.Belgiumexportslots
offrozenfries.Thespokesmanexplainedwhyfrieswouldbeshorter.Hes
aidlongfriesof8to9cmneedpotatoeswithadiameterofmorethan50m
m.Thissummer'ssmallerpotatoesmeansfrieswillbeshorter.

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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