How many peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are made in America each morning? Hundreds of thousands? Millions? Yet there’s no good way to get the sticky peanut butter and the sloppy jelly from deep within the jar to its new home on the bread. A knife sort of works, but how many times has its skinny surface accidentally dumped the jelly on the counter? A spoon would be better, if only there were a force in the universe other than one’s tongue that could effectively remove peanut butter from a spoon.
The SpoonSpreader ($5), by FusionBrands, is a new take on a few classic kitchen implements. It’s essentially a folding spoon, which creates a food-friendly valley to scoop out thick spreads from the narrowest of containers. Then, when actually spreading, it flattens out, maximizing its surface area to properly allocate sweet, sticky scrumptiousness all over your starch of choice.
"As simple as something looks, there are always design challenges," the company tells Co.Design. "We were challenged with developing the tool to be lightweight enough for young & old to hold, as well as determining the best technique and material to use to create the hinge."
After several prototypes, FusionBrands settled on what they call the "Living Hinge," which is created from a plastic that can be folded and refolded without snapping. It also appears to have a very wide berth, meaning small fingers won’t be pinched every time they reach for a second helping.
The earliest spoons have been found dating back to 10,000 BCE. And while the SpoonSpreader will by no means drive them into extinction—the average spoon is a remarkably elegant, utilitarian product—it’s not the worst reminder: Just because we’ve always used knives and spoons to scoop out the peanut butter doesn’t mean we always will. Every experience has room for improvement…and most have space for hinges.