1. Read the sentences, then listen and fill in the missing words.

 Every ……………… thing has genes.

 Genetic engineers put duck genes into chickens to make the chickens ……………… .

 The effects of genetic engineering on our health are not ……………… .

 The engineering may create life forms – monsters – that we cannot ……………… .

 Greenpeace is trying to ……………… all such food experiments.

 Genetic engineering could be the solution to the ……………… of famine.

Answer & Audioscript

1 living   2 bigger   3 known   4 control   5 prevent   6 problem


      You didn’t ask for it, and you might not know about it. But you’ve probably already eaten, some of it. It’s genetically engineered food.

      Perfectly round tomatoes all exactly the same size, long straight cucumbers and big fat chickens are now a normal part of our diets. They are made that way by genetic engineering – not by nature. Their genes have been changed.

      Every living thing has genes. They are passed on from generation to generation. They make sure that humans give birth to humans and cows give birth to cows. They also make sure that a dog cannot give birth to a frog, or an elephant to a horse. Genetic engineers take genes from one species – for example, a scorpion, and transfer them to another – for example, corn. In this way a new life form is created.

      Genetic engineers put duck genes into chickens to make the chickens bigger. They put hormones into cows to make them produce more milk. They put genes from flowers into soya beans and from scorpions into corn. This does not make them cheaper, tastier or healthier. It makes them easier and faster for the farmer to grow.

      The effects of genetic engineering on our health are not known. Many of the genes which are used – such as those of scorpions, rats, mice and moths – are not part of our diet so we do not know how dangerous they may be. For example, people can develop allergies to food which has been genetically engineered.

      The effects of genetic engineering on the natural world may be disastrous. The engineers may create life forms – monsters – that we cannot control. The new life forms have no natural habitat or home. They will have to find one, fight for one – or kill for one.

      Moreover, the effects of these experiments can often be cruel. In America, pigs were given human genes to make them bigger and less fatty. The pigs became very ill and began to lose their eyesight.

Greenpeace is trying to prevent all such food experiments. Some – but not all – food companies are refusing to use genetically engineered foods. We must all be aware of what is happening.

      Some people believe, though, that genetic engineering could be the solution to the problem of famine. Plants which grow faster, or cows which produce more milk, can save the lives of starving people.

      We would all like a better, healthier and longer life, and genetic engineering might give us this. On the other hand, it may be a dangerous experiment with nature. In the story, Frankenstein created such a terrible and dangerous monster that he had to destroy it. We must make sure that it remains a story – and no more than that.

2. Read the table, then listen and fill in the missing words.

Complaint Reason

– service was (1)……………

– music was very (2)……………

– food was (3)…………… cooked

– waiter was (4)……………

we had to (5)…………… half an hour

we couldn’t (6)…………… each other

steak was tough and chips were greasy

didn’t apologise for spilling (7)……………

Answer & Audioscript

1 slow   2 loud   3 badly   4 rude

5 wait   6 hear   7 coffee


Man:   That was the worst meal I’ve ever had!

Woman:   Oh, I know! I really think we should write to the management and complain.

Man:   Yes, you’re right. What should we say first?

Woman:   Well, the service was slow, for a start. We had to wait at least half an hour to order.

Man:   Mm. And the music was very loud. I couldn’t hear a word you were saying.

Woman:   No, we couldn’t hear each other at all. And the food! It was so badly cooked!

Man:   It was disgusting, wasn’t it? The steak was tough and the chips were so greasy I couldn’t eat them.

Woman:   And the waiter was rude! Did you notice that he didn’t even apologise when he spilt coffee on me? I’d say it’s the worst restaurant I’ve ever eaten in.

Man:   I agree. Let’s write to them as soon as we get home.

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