The influence of propionate supplementation on the splanchnic metabolism of energy-yielding nutrients and the supply of glucose to the hindlimb was investigated in growing lambs. Six rumen-cannulated and multicatheterized lambs (32·2 kg), fed frozen rye grass at 690 kJ metabolizable energy intak/ per kg body weight0·75, were infused intraruminally with a salt solution (control) or with propionate solutions at 0·55 mo/ (P1) or 0·98 mo/ (P2) according to a replicated Latin square design. In the rumen fluid, supplementation decreased the acetate:propionate molar ratio from 2·36:1 to 1·37:1, without modifying the ruminal concentrations of acetate and NH4. As a result, the portal appearance of propionate increased by 51 and 72 % with P1 and P2, respectively, and that of L-LACTATE DOUBLED. ACROSS THE Liver, net extraction of propionate increased by 47 and 67 % with P1 and P2, respectively. However, the net hepatic production of glucose remained unchanged, probably as the result of a substantial rise in insulin secretion and its hepatic extraction. Overall, the net splanchnic release of acetate, glucose and butyrate was not modified while that of L-lactate increased. Despite this, the net uptake of acetate, glucose, l-lactate and non-esterified fatty acids by the hindlimb increased. Propionate probably enhanced the storage of energy-yielding nutrients in the hindlimb, despite their unchanged release by the splanchnic tissues and the unmodified insulinaemia. Regulatory mechanisms are not clear.