Walking through the warehouse of food processor Heartland Gourmet in Lincoln, Neb., shows how complicated the food safety system can be. Pallets are stacked with sacks of potato flour, and the smell of fresh-baked apple-cinnamon muffins floats in the air.
Heartland Gourmet makes a wide range of foods — from muffins and organic baking mixes to pizzas and burritos. That means business manager Mark Zink has to answer to both of the main U.S. food safety regulators, the Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration.
If pushing a cart up and down the lengthy aisles of your neighborhood supermarket — past dozens of brands of packaged cereal and crackers lit by fluorescent lights — feels overwhelming and soul-sucking, you're not alone.
But there's some good news: The days of shopping this way may be numbered.
Never before has the U.S. had so much oil spurting up out of the ground and sloshing into storage tanks around the country. There's so much oil that the U.S. now rivals Saudi Arabia as the world's largest producer.
But there has been some concern that the U.S. will run out of places to put it all. Some analysts speculate that could spark another dramatic crash in oil prices.
The federal government is moving to reign in the payday loan industry, which critics say traps consumers in a damaging cycle of debt. A look at the possible effects of proposed regulations and what push back they might face.
Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.
Singapore has been called the 20th century's most successful development story.
"I don't think any other economy," says Linda Lim, an economist at the University of Michigan, "even the other Asian tigers, have that a good a statistical record of rapid growth, full employment, with very good social indicators — life expectancy, education, housing, etc. — in the first 20 years," she says.
There's a new bar in New York City devoted to the fastest-growing alcoholic beverage in America. But don't expect a list heavy on craft beer or bourbon.
Wassail is a cider bar.
"You can see the color, very deep," says Ben Sandler, co-owner of the bar and restaurant on Manhattan's Lower East Side. He's filling my glass with a delicious amber liquid from E.Z. Orchards in Salem, Ore. "You can see it's kind of cloudy, so it's not filtered. Really dry."