Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the commonest malignancies of Western countries, with approximately half the incidence occurring in patients >70 years of age. Elderly CRC patients, however, are understaged, undertreated and underrepresented in clinical trials. The International Society of Geriatric Oncology created a task force with a view to assessing the potential for developing guidelines for the treatment of elderly (geriatric) CRC patients. A review of the evidence presented by the task force members confirmed the paucity of clinical trial data in elderly people and the lack of evidence-based guidelines. However, recommendations have been proposed on the basis of the available data and on the emerging evidence that treatment outcomes for fit, elderly CRC patients can be similar to those of younger patients. It is hoped that these will pave the way for formal treatment guidelines based upon solid scientific evidence in the future.