An efficient method for genetic transformation of lactococci by electroporation is presented. Highly competent lactococci for electrotransformation were obtained by growing cells in media containing high concentrations of glycine and 0.5 M sucrose as the osmotic stabilizers. These cells could be stored at -85 degrees C without loss of competence. With Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris BC101, a transformation frequency of 5.7 x 10 transformants per mug of pIL253 DNA was obtained, which represents 5% of the surviving cells. All the lactococcal strains tested could be transformed by the present method.