Agricultural Information Resource Centre (AIRC) is a state department within the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Blue Economy and Co-operatives. It was started in 1966, and has over the years produced Agricultural Information materials for extension workers and farmers. The Centre has also been involved in training on among other related courses: communication skills, supervisory and management skills, extension service delivery for extension and other development workers.
The services were initially offered free of charge but in the late 1980s due to budgetary constraints, the government found itself unable to provide adequate financial resources to AIRC for investment and operations. In pursuit of the recommendations made by a consultant, a proposal for a Revolving Fund for AIRC commercial activities was prepared and it aimed at rationalizing the Centre’s operations to enable it exploit its comparative advantage.
The Government created a revolving fund through a legal notice number 163 of 25th June, 1993 to facilitate AIRC to operate commercially and to retain the revenue it earns to meet its production costs instead of remitting it to Treasury. To this end, a Seed capital of RF was provided as a Revolving Fund to meet AIRC initial working capital requirements from the Treasury.
The arrangement allowed the Centre retain revenues earned from the commercial activities, to enhance the quality of services and thereby be more effective, efficient, responsive to the information needs of the Kenyan farmers, training needs of extension workers and the agriculture sector in general.