Smeg promotion: Kiwi woman serves cautionary tale after slicing finger with popular Smeg knife

A woman who sliced her finger with a Smeg knife redeemed during a popular New World promotion is serving a cautionary tale, warning other keen cooks to be wary of the "super sharp" blades.

The woman, who wished to remain anonymous, managed to get her hands on one of the coveted Italian knives during New World's 12-week campaign. The supermarket chain ran a popular promotion that awarded shoppers a sticker for every $20 they spent. After collecting a certain amount, customers were able to redeem the stickers for a selection of Smeg knives or a stylish knife block.

The premium products were in hot demand, with more than 1.2 million knives dished out over the three-month period. 

But with so many amateur cooks enthusiastically brandishing luxury knives, it's not just onions getting the chop. According to RNZ, ACC figures for the three months from November 2020 show 23 claims for knife injuries - with the words 'Smeg' and 'knife promotion' included in the optional accident description box.

And now, another victim has spoken out - warning proud Smeg owners to be careful with the "super sharp" blades.

The woman told Newshub that as she was able to treat the cut herself, she did not have to make an ACC claim. She said that thankfully, the sharpness of the blade meant the cut was clean.

"One good thing is that it was so sharp, it was a clean cut - which was dripping profusely," she said. 

"On the upside, that meant it healed quite well."

But the cut did come at a cost.

"[I'm] too scared to use the bloody thing now!"

Her cautionary tale came after a Wellington woman, named Pip, told RNZ she sliced her finger to the bone while cutting an avocado.

"It didn't really hurt because the knives are so sharp it actually did a very clean cut," Pip said.

"I looked down and realised that it was actually very deep, so I showed the cut to my husband, who looked at it and said, 'I think that's going to need stitching', and so we went to [the emergency department]."

Pip told RNZ she had heard of "quite a few people" that had suffered injuries after procuring a sought-after Smeg knife.

She suggested that New Zealanders might not be used to handling such "good quality" knives in the kitchen.

A woman told Newshub the Smeg knives were "super sharp" and warned others to be careful.
A woman told Newshub the Smeg knives were "super sharp" and warned others to be careful. Photo credit: Supplied

Speaking to RNZ, Steve Logan, the owner of the restaurant Logan Brown, gave a few pointers for novices.

He suggested putting a damp cloth under the chopping board to secure it before selecting an appropriately-sized knife for the task at hand. 

"The hand that's holding the thing you're cutting - you turn it into a bit of a claw so all your fingers are behind your knuckles - and you keep the knife outside those knuckles," he explained.

"When you cut, cut on an angle slightly away from your hand."

He claimed that New Zealanders likely have more of a gung-ho attitude towards safety, and needed to sharpen up.

New World's owner, Foodstuffs, encouraged customers to use all sharp objects appropriately and safely.

They say if you can't handle the heat, get out of the kitchen - but in this case, if you can't handle the German steel, maybe brush up on the knife skills.