Wellington woman finds worms inside meatballs

A Wellington woman says she fell ill after eating meatballs with worms inside them she'd bought a local supermarket.

The woman - who doesn't want to be named - posted to community group Vic Deals to warn other people after her "horrible experience".

She said she had purchased some pre-made meatballs from Countdown in Crofton Downs and cooked them for herself and her son.

But once she began eating, she noticed the beef tasted "off".

Upon closer inspection, she saw there were living worms inside the meatballs. A video taken by her shows a worm wiggling in the middle of the meatball.

She says afterwards she had stomach pains and was diagnosed with worms by her GP.

The post has since been deleted. 

Countdown has refunded her for the purchase and her GP visit and says food quality and safety is a "number one priority".

"We're taking our customer's concerns seriously and have been in contact with her since she raised it with our team on Saturday," a spokesperson for the supermarket told Newshub.

"The product is being independently tested by a lab and entomologist."

The supermarket says it is unlikely the worms were in the meatballs when they left the supermarket, and say generally live larva "won't survive the cooking process".

As soon as test results are available the woman will be contacted again.

"We want to remind customers that in this current heat, it's essential to cover all food when preparing or cooling meals."

The Ministry for Primary Industries says the worms are likely maggots, introduced due to improper handling in the home.

"We're unaware of any parasites that are likely to be present in New Zealand beef," said a New Zealand Food Safety spokesperson.

"During hot summer months, food is likely to spoil faster or be contaminated by pests more frequently."

It says food businesses must operate a risk-based programme which includes information about cleaning, sanitising and pest management.