New technologies based on microarray methods have begun to feature widely in carbohydrate chemistry and biology. These ‘glycoarray’ techniques, which in a number of cases emulate what has been achieved with DNA microarrays, allow for high throughput, quantitative analysis of protein–carbohydrate interactions. Lectin, antibody and enzyme specificity have been evaluated with these new techniques, which also extend to the detection of viruses and bacteria, and serodiagnosis of infection. In the plant field, high throughput mapping of cell wall carbohydrate structures has been reported, giving information not only on the localisation of given glycans within a plant, but also allowing systematic comparison between mutants and species. This review outlines some of the basic principles of ‘glycoarrays’ and illustrates recent reports of their development and application.