A rapid selection method was developed to enrich for a stable and efficient anodophilic consortium (AC) for microbial fuel cells (MFCs). A biofilm sample from a microbial electrolysis cell was serially diluted up to 10-9 in anaerobic phosphate buffer solution and incubated in an Fe(III)-acetate medium, and an Fe(III)-reducing AC was obtained for dilutions up to 10-6. The activity of MFC inoculated with the enrichment AC was compared with those inoculated with original biofilm or activated sludge. The power densities and Coulombic efficiencies of the AC (226 mW/m2, 34%) were higher than those of the original biofilm (209 mW/m2, 23%) and activated sludge (192 mW/m2, 19%). The start-up period of the AC (60 h) was also shorter than those obtained with the other inocula (biofilm, 95 h; activated sludge, 300 h). This indicated that such a strategy is highly efficient for obtaining an anodophilic consortium for improving the performance of an MFC. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.