In this study, a loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) method to rapidly detect Staphylococcus aureus strains was developed and evaluated by extensively applying a large number of S. aureus isolates from clinical and food samples. Six primers were specially designed for recognizing eight distinct sequences on the species-specific femA gene of S. aureus. The detection limits were 100 fg DNA/tube and 104 CFU/ml. The LAMP assay was applied to 432 S. aureus strains isolated from 118 clinical and 314 food samples. Total detection rates for the LAMP and polymerase chain reaction assays were 98.4% (306/311) and 89.4% (278/311), respectively.