We report an outbreak of hepatitis A that occurred in the city of Bari (Apulian region) in June 2002. Overall, 26 cases were observed over a 4-week period. These were traced back to the index case, a food handler who prepared various food products for sale over the counter at a store in the district (OR 5·36, CI 95% 1·58–19·25). Laboratory investigations confirmed that the outbreak was due to a point source and identified a new genotype IB variant. There is a possible indication for administration of hepatitis A vaccine to food handlers, although further evidence of an acceptable cost–benefit ratio needs to be ascertained.