Mastitis in England and Wales has been controlled over the past 20 years while the average size of dairy herds has doubled to 65 cows. The incidence of clinical mastitis has been reduced from approximately 120 to 150 cases per 100 cows to less than 50 cases. The limited data on the prevalence of subclinical mastitis indicate that it has been reduced from over 50 per cent of cows infected to less than half this level. The application of the major mastitis control measures on the farm has doubled over the period 1973 to 1983 and had reached 66 to 90 per cent for individual measures by 1983. The national mean cell count in milk has been reduced from 573,000 to 352,000 cells/ml between 1971 and 1986, and the proportion of herds having annual mean cell counts below 300,000 cells/ml has increased from 15.7 per cent to 40.7 per cent in the last eight years.