The Perfect Peanut Butter Jar Works Like A Push-Pop

Begone, peanut butter knuckles!

Aside from puberty, it’s the deepest childhood trauma. You open a delicious jar of peanut butter. Roasted umami hits your nose like a hug. As you reach the knife into the jar, you feel, not the velvety pillow of nuts ground with palm oil, but the harsh clank of metal on glass. Oh no. Innocence is lost. Life becomes pain. Saddled with the emotional scar tissue from your bruised and buttered knuckles, lunchtime is never the same again.

What if I told you, it doesn’t need to be this way? Jar with a Twist, created by a team of NC State University entrepreneurs, reimagines the peanut butter experience without the lesson in the general disappointment of human existence.

"The solution didn’t come right at first, but somehow or another we jumped to deodorant-style peanut butter jars," explains developer Steve Smith. "It sounded crazy, but we thought it just might work."

The team began prototyping through the school’s 3-D printers. And what they developed was a jar that twists on the bottom, slowly screwing its way up, pushing the peanut sediment toward the container’s surface (just like deodorant). As for its ecological impact, Smith describes the container as "a normal peanut butter jar plus one more lid," with a materials cost that would increase packaging from an average of $0.10 to $0.13. But the team believes that the convenience factor can equate to a 30-40 cent increase on the store shelf, and there is something to be said for every consumer being able to eat 100% of the peanut butter rather than throwing scrapings away.

Jar with a Twist can even work for other annoyingly scrape-centric products like salsa and queso dip. It’s such a good idea that you’ll wonder why you didn’t come up with it first. But like any idea, it’s hard enough to implement that you may be happy that you didn’t.

"While the idea is simple and we often hear ‘I could have thought of that,’ there is a lot to be said for the six months of prototyping and testing we have conducted," Smith says. "We believe we are putting in the effort to make this product consumer-ready."

See more here.

[Hat tip: Gizmodo]

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  • Tiki Roommate

    While I can appreciate their effort and solution from a design perspective, I personally have to put this under #firstworldproblems.  Who throws scrapings away?  People demonstrate very liberal ways of eating peanut butter, including the traces left in the jar.  Reports suggest that Americans waste as much as 40% of their food. This must only account for a fraction of a fraction of a percent.  I'm not knocking it... but I'd like to see the surface areas and design optimized before seeing this mass-produced.  

  • Camilla Lang

    I thought it was also made of paperboard of somekind? Hmmm, disappointed it is also plastic...

  • dabble53

    I would have done it push-up style instead of screw style. Like some measuring cups, and the old-fashioned push-up frozen novelties. I expect it would even be less cost and simpler manufacturing.

  • Irene Velveteen

    There would have to be some way to prevent from coming down again. I'm sure they'd come up with something. But in the meantime I think the circular motion of peanut butter is mesmerising enough to not complain

  • Michael Houston

    Unless the seal on the bottom scrapes the peanut butter up the sides perfectly, this will presumably leave the inside of the jar bottom slightly sticky, and you have to put your hand inside there to screw the base all the way to the top. Maybe I'm missing something.

  • TStephenGaunt

    I was never traumatized as a child.  

    Throw away the scrapings?  Never!  I simply got out the rubber bladed spatula. Some of us learned field-expediency at an early age.

    You still have to scrape the last bit off no matter how close to the top it is.

  • columbuscook

    I like the idea of it, but it will invariably lead to the same trickery done with deodorant.  Massively huge containers with only 4 inches of actual product inside and the label screaming, "BONUS SIZED!"