Human cartilage was produced using fetal chondrocytes seeded into polyglycolic acid (PGA) mesh scaffolds and cultured in recirculation bioreactors. The effect of scaffold thickness, seeding cell density, and bioreactor operating conditions on the quality of the engineered cartilage was investigated. Thin (2.15-mm-thick) PGA scaffolds lost their structural integrity during bioreactor culture and the resulting constructs were small and misshapen compared with tissues generated using 4.75-mm-thick scaffolds. Increasing the seeding cell number from 1.2 ?? 107 to 2.2 ?? 10 7 per 4.75-mm-thick scaffold resulted in a doubling of the construct wet weight, a 4.4-fold increase in glycosaminoglycan (GAG) concentration, and a 2.9-fold increase in total collagen concentration in the tissues. Levels of GAG and total collagen were also improved significantly when 100 mL or 50 v/v of the culture medium was replaced periodically during operation of the bioreactors compared with 50, 25, or 5 mL. The proportion of GAG lost from the tissues into the medium was reduced by increasing the seeding cell number and replaced medium volume. This work demonstrates that the quality of tissue-engineered cartilage can be manipulated substantially depending on the cell seeding and bioreactor culture conditions employed.