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It is a problem that has long puzzled both chefs and snackers alike.
But makers of a new high-tech knife claim to have solved the conundrum faced by millions every morning - how to successfully spread butter straight from the fridge.
The SpreadTHAT! blade uses a revolutionary heat-transfer system which harnesses body heat to melt through the butter, allowing it to easily spread onto our toast.
Designers of the new knife claim to have developed a copper alloy tube which instantly transfers heat from the palm to the end of the blade.
And weighing just 2.91 oz., the blade uses no electric or batteries, no heating or hot water, and most importantly, needs no heat-up period.
A spokesman for the designers explained: "We discovered that the current butter spreaders on the market are simply not adequate for spreading butter.
"We wanted to create a spreader that can effectively spread cold butter, and we wanted to do it without using any electricity nor hot water. We also demanded a solution that is completely safe to handle by small children, meaning that there cannot be any sharp edges.
"After months of ideation, experiments and prototyping, we finally have our solution."
The device has so far proven a runaway success on the crowdfunding website Kickstarter, smashing its $20,000 (about £7,500) target within days. Crowdfunding is the practice of financing a project or venture by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people, typically via the Internet.
And its designers say the prototype SpreadTHAT! knife works on the principle that heat always flows in the direction of lower temperature.
The heart of the device features a copper alloy tube similar to that used to cool down computer processors in the semiconductor manufacturing industry. As soon as the knife is held in the hand it draws heat from the palm and transfers it to the end. The copper is encased in titanium, making it slim and light.
The Kickstarter campaign, which launched at the start of August, has now raised $33,500 with 18 left to go.
The team behind the device, based in Seattle, USA, hope to have the product in mass production in time for Christmas.
When it finally hits the shelves, it is expected to retail at a price of around £15.