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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay related to producing and importing food from the real IELTS exam.

Check out my online classes here and my online corrections here.

Dave

Before reading, be sure to listen to the audio file and take notes:

IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample Answer Essay: Producing & Importing Food

Some feel that countries should produce most of the food that is eaten in their country and import as little as possible.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Real Past IELTS Exam

Many today are increasingly of the opinion that countries should be self-sufficient in their food production and import as little as possible. Though I grant this is unrealistic in certain countries, the economic implications are convincing.

In most countries, imported foods are simply a luxury but this belies those nations where imports ensure survival. Some of these countries include populous Southeast Asian nations, and numerous Middle Eastern and African countries. The reasons range from poorly developed infrastructure, little arable soil, and increased vulnerability to natural disasters. Many Asian countries in particular, import and stockpile basic foods such as rice for potential catastrophes. As agricultural technology develops and allows for crops that require less water, their desperation will lessen but it would be inhumane today to starve citizens in these countries.

The above-mentioned scenarios are exceptions; the majority of countries would be better served through vibrant food cultivation and production industries. The economic impact is twofold. First, these industries employ thousands of agricultural and meat-packing workers. Secondly, these workers then contribute to the local economy by buying goods and services. Replace them with international food conglomerates and suddenly they are funding the GDP of another country. A good counter-example to this would be in South Korea where the vast majority of products are nationally produced and, in fact, were some of the initial, primary sources of income for technology giants like Samsung and LG.

In conclusion, except in extreme cases, countries should import fewer food products to better serve their citizenry economically. There will always be a place for a limited range of imports but it should not supersede local production.

Analysis

1. Many today are increasingly of the opinion that countries should be self-sufficient in their food production and import as little as possible. 2. Though I grant this is unrealistic in certain countries, the economic implications are convincing.

  1. Paraphrase the overall topic for the essay.
  2. Clearly state your opinion.

1. In most countries, imported foods are simply a luxury but this belies those nations where imports ensure survival. 2. Some of these countries include populous Southeast Asian nations, and numerous Middle Eastern and African countries. 3. The reasons range from poorly developed infrastructure, little arable soil, and increased vulnerability to natural disasters. 4. Many Asian countries in particular, import and stockpile basic foods such as rice for potential catastrophes. 5. As agricultural technology develops and allows for crops that require less water, their desperation will lessen but it would be inhumane today to starve citizens in these countries.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Use specific examples for support.
  3. Give specific details.
  4. Continue developing your ideas and examples.
  5. Conclude your paragraph by relating it back to the overall topic.

1. The above-mentioned scenarios are exceptions; the majority of countries would be better served through vibrant food cultivation and production industries. 2. The economic impact is twofold. 3. First, these industries employees thousands of agricultural and meat-packing workers. 4. Secondly, these workers then contribute to the local economy by buying goods and services. 5. Replace them with international food conglomerates and suddenly they are funding the GDP of another country. 6. A good counter-example to this would be in South Korea where the vast majority of products are nationally produced and, in fact, were some of the initial, primary sources of income for technology giants like Samsung and LG.

  1. Write another topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Vary long and short sentences.
  3. Develop your main idea specifically.
  4. Make sure you focus on a single main idea.
  5. State the full results.
  6. Include an example or counter-example.

1. In conclusion, except in extreme cases, countries should import fewer food products to better serve their citizenry economically. 2. There will always be a place for a limited range of imports but it should not supersede local production.

  1. Repeat your opinion and summarise your main ideas.
  2. Add a final thought/detail.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

Many today are increasingly of the opinion that countries should be self-sufficient in their food production and import as little as possible. Though I grant this is unrealistic in certain countries, the economic implications are convincing.

In most countries, imported foods are simply a luxury but this belies those nations where imports ensure survival. Some of these countries include populous Southeast Asian nations, and numerous Middle Eastern and African countries. The reasons range from poorly developed infrastructure, little arable soil, and increased vulnerability to natural disasters. Many Asian countries in particular, import and stockpile basic foods such as rice for potential catastrophes. As agricultural technology develops and allows for crops that require less water, their desperation will lessen but it would be inhumane today to starve citizens in these countries.

The above-mentioned scenarios are exceptions; the majority of countries would be better served through vibrant food cultivation and production industries. The economic impact is twofold. First, these industries employees thousands of agricultural and meat-packing workers. Secondly, these workers then contribute to the local economy by buying goods and services. Replace them with international food conglomerates and suddenly they are funding the GDP of another country. A good counter-example to this would be in South Korea where the vast majority of products are nationally produced and, in fact, were some of the initial, primary sources of income for technology giants like Samsung and LG.

In conclusion, except in extreme cases, countries should import fewer food products to better serve their citizenry economically. There will always be a place for a limited range of imports but it should not supersede local production.

Answers

increasingly of the opinion more and more think

self-sufficient can support themselves

food production growing food (meat and crops)

import as little as possible don’t bring in much food from other countries

grant will allow

unrealistic not really possible

implications results

convincing persuasive

simply a luxury only for enjoyment

belies falsely undermines

ensure survival allow them to live

populous lots of people

range from include

infrastructure buildings, roads, farms, etc.

little arable soil not much usable land for farming

vulnerability weak

natural disasters tsunamis, hurricanes, etc.

stockpile store up

potential catastrophes possible disasters

agricultural technology develops farming methods advance

crops farm food

require need

desperation really need

lessen weaken

inhumane not human, cruel

starve citizens people die from hunger

above-mentioned scenarios just talked about situations

exceptions not generally true

vibrant food cultivation thriving food industry

twofold has two parts

meat-packing collecting meat

contribute give to

local economy national economy

services providing something you do for others

replace take the place of

international food conglomerates big food companies

funding giving money

GDP gross domestic product

counter-example example showing the opposite

vast majority most of

nationally produced made by that country

initial, primary sources first, main origin of

income money earned

technology giants Facebook, Google, Samsung, etc.

except in extreme cases besides the outliers

better serve make more sense for

citizenry economically people financially

a place an area for, should still exist

limited range not everywhere

supersede overtake, supplant

Pronunciation

Listen and repeat:

ɪnˈkriːsɪŋli ɒv ði əˈpɪnjən 
sɛlf-səˈfɪʃənt 
fuːd prəˈdʌkʃən 
ˈɪmpɔːt æz ˈlɪtl æz ˈpɒsəbl
grɑːnt 
ˌʌnrɪəˈlɪstɪk
ˌɪmplɪˈkeɪʃənz 
kənˈvɪnsɪŋ
ˈsɪmpli ə ˈlʌkʃəri 
bɪˈlaɪz 
ɪnˈʃʊə səˈvaɪvəl
ˈpɒpjʊləs 
reɪnʤ frɒm 
ˈɪnfrəˌstrʌkʧə
ˈlɪtl ˈærəbl sɔɪl
ˌvʌlnərəˈbɪlɪti 
ˈnæʧrəl dɪˈzɑːstəz
ˈstɒkpaɪl 
pəʊˈtɛnʃəl kəˈtæstrəfiz
ˌægrɪˈkʌlʧərəl tɛkˈnɒləʤi dɪˈvɛləps 
krɒps 
rɪˈkwaɪə 
ˌdɛspəˈreɪʃən 
ˈlɛsn 
ˌɪnhju(ː)ˈmeɪn 
stɑːv ˈsɪtɪznz 
əˈbʌvˈmɛnʃ(ə)nd sɪˈnɑːrɪəʊz 
ɪkˈsɛpʃənz
ˈvaɪbrənt fuːd ˌkʌltɪˈveɪʃən 
ˈtuːfəʊld
ˈmiːtˌpækɪŋ 
kənˈtrɪbju(ː)t 
ˈləʊkəl i(ː)ˈkɒnəmi 
ˈsɜːvɪsɪz
rɪˈpleɪs 
ˌɪntə(ː)ˈnæʃənl fuːd kənˈglɒmərɪts 
ˈfʌndɪŋ 
ʤiː-diː-piː 
ˈkaʊntər-ɪgˈzɑːmpl 
vɑːst məˈʤɒrɪti 
ˈnæʃnəli prəˈdjuːst 
ɪˈnɪʃəlˈpraɪməri ˈsɔːsɪz 
ˈɪnkʌm 
tɛkˈnɒləʤi ˈʤaɪənts 
ɪkˈsɛpt ɪn ɪksˈtriːm ˈkeɪsɪz
ˈbɛtə sɜːv 
ˈsɪtɪznri ˌiːkəˈnɒmɪkəli
ə pleɪs 
ˈlɪmɪtɪd reɪnʤ 
ˌsjuːpəˈsiːd 

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

Many today are i_____________________________n that countries should be s_____________________________t in their f_________________________n and i_________________________________e. Though I g________t this is u______________c in certain countries, the economic i_________________s are c____________________g.

In most countries, imported foods are s___________________y but this b________s those nations where imports e______________________l. Some of these countries include p________________s Southeast Asian nations, and numerous Middle Eastern and African countries. The reasons r________________m poorly developed i_____________________e, l___________________________l, and increased v____________________y to n____________________________s. Many Asian countries in particular, import and s________________e basic foods such as rice for p___________________________s. As a________________________________s and allows for c________s that r___________e less water, their d_________________n will l___________n but it would be i________________e today to s________________s in these countries.

The a______________________________s are e________________s; the majority of countries would be better served through v___________________________n and production industries. The economic impact is t_____________d. First, these industries employees thousands of agricultural and m________________g workers. Secondly, these workers then c___________________e to the l______________________y by buying goods and s________________s. R_______________e them with i___________________________________s and suddenly they are f___________g the G____P of another country. A good c____________________________e to this would be in South Korea where the v________________________y of products are n_______________________d and, in fact, were some of the i__________l, p____________________s of i_____________e for t________________________s like Samsung and LG.

In conclusion, e___________________________s, countries should import fewer food products to b_________________e their c__________________________y. There will always be a___________e for a l_________________e of imports but it should not s_______________e local production.

Listen and check:

Listening Practice

Learn more about eating locally here (slightly irrelevant to the exact question):

Reading Practice

Read about your country and food imports/exports below:

https://www.businessinsider.com/nomura-food-crisis-2010-9#23-latvia-3

Speaking Practice

Talk about the related topic of cakes below from the real speaking exam:

Cakes

Do you like cakes?

Have you ever baked a cake?

How often do you eat cakes?

Are cakes popular in your country?

Real Past IELTS Exam

Writing Practice

Write about the following related topic then check with my sample answer:

In spite of the advances made in agriculture, many people around the world still go hungry.

Why is this the case?

What can be done about this problem?

Real Past IELTS Exam

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