Cases of gastroenteritis were examined to identify if dietary intake prior to an episode and food-handling and storage practices in the home were risk factors for illness. Cases and controls completed a dietary questionnaire after an event or when well, and questionnaires concerning food-handling, storage and general food-hygiene practices. Comparing cases to themselves when well, subjects were more likely to have eaten cold sliced salami, fried rice and foods cooked elsewhere, and to have had a baby in nappies in the house (OR 1·52–6·24, P[les ]0·01). Cases compared to non-cases were more likely to have bought frozen poultry, have eaten foods cooked elsewhere and to have had a baby in nappies in the house (OR 1·44–2·05, P[les ]0·01). Although food-handling and storage practices are considered important, we were unable to detect an association in this study.