Safeway Stores in Arizona and Gallup, NM are recalling 22,000 pounds of fresh ground beef produced by Beef Packers Inc, a Cargill unit.

It has “Sell By” dates of Sept. 28 through Oct. 11, 2009.

While the recalled product is no longer in stores, Safeway is asking its customers to check all ground beef in their freezers.

The recall includes fresh ground beef products sold during the dates listed above at the full-service counter in brown butcher paper and at the self-service area wrapped on black Styrofoam trays.

These products include fresh ground beef, fresh ground beef patties, fresh meat balls, fresh meat loaf and fresh bell peppers stuffed with beef and pork.

Safeway says the ground beef should be discarded or returned for a full refund.

Consumption of food contaminated with Salmonella Newport can cause salmonellosis.

Salmonella Newport infections can be life-threatening, especially to those with weak immune systems, infants, the elderly, and persons undergoing chemotherapy.

This particular strain of Salmonella Newport is resistant to many commonly prescribed drugs, which can increase the risk of hospitalization or possible treatment failure in infected individuals. The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within eight to 72 hours.

Additional symptoms may include chills, headache, nausea and vomiting that can last up to seven days.