[en] Non-timber forest product (NTFP) are of significant nutritional, economic and cultural importance for the people of central Africa. However, many products have not yet been the subject of scientific studies; such is the case of Coula edulis. Although very little is known about this species, it has many uses and its fruits are regulary eaten and marketed by various communities. Cultivation of this tree species remains however very limited, mainly because of the low germination potentiel of its seeds. Its wood, renowned for its termite resistance, is used locally for construction. Mechanical tests conducted on the timber have put its technological aptitudes to the fore; it has indeed the potential to become one of the most sought-after commercial species. As in the future, Coula edulis could be managed for its wood as well as its non-timber forest product, in-depth studies aiming at the sustainable development of this natural ressource need to be implemented.
La présente synthèse bibliographique ambitionne de dresser l'état des connaissances acquises sur une espèce méconnue: le noisetier d'Afrique (Coula edulis Bail.). Elle aborde d'abord la notion de produit forestier non ligneux et son importance pour les populations d'Afrique centrale. La biologie, les tentatives de propagation et les multiples utilisations de l'espèce sont passées avant l'identification de quelques perspectives de recherche dans l'optique d'une meilleure valorisation de l'essence.