An Auckland woman says she was shocked to discover a Tegel chicken meal she had just eaten contained dozens of larvae.
Amy Skeates found the larvae after cooking a frozen Tegel meal of satay tenderloins last Wednesday.
"I discovered multiple what appeared to be maggots baked into the sauce that had been on the chicken," she said.
"I felt totally sick, so sick that it made me vomit. I just thought 'oh my gosh, I just ate a trayful of worms'."
She contacted Progressive Enterprises, which owns Countdown, but received "a very vague response".
She then contacted Tegel, which expressed serious concern and offered her an apology and two $15 Tegel vouchers. The company's head of quality control told her the creatures appeared to be mealworms not maggots, but this could not be confirmed.
She had not had any adverse health effects, other than feeling "traumatised".
Countdown and Tegel representatives said they were investigating.
Entomologist Ruud Kleinpaste said dead mealworms and maggots were not bad for humans. In fact, he had snacked on mealworms before.
"They're brilliant with a bit of salt."