top of page
Image by Jo Jo

Case study

Adoption of Plant-based Meat in China

Next-gen materials is an overarching category of high performance, sustainable, and animal-free materials developed for the fashion, automotive, and homegoods industries. North Mountain is partnering with Material Innovation Initiative (Napa, CA, US) to establish a consumer research program on next-gen materials used in the fashion, automotive, and homegoods industries.

In this study, we examined urban Chinese consumer purchasing preferences for leather and leather alternatives.



  • We collected survey responses from a sample of 501 individuals across China. The sample was nationally representative in terms of age and gender, but was more urban, educated, and higher income earning than the general population.

  • We segmented consumers by generation, material type preference, and purchase likelihood.


  • We  found a very high degree of acceptance of next-gen leather products in urban China: 90% reported a preference for next-gen leather over conventional leather and 70% reported a high (“very” or “extremely”) likelihood of purchasing.

  • In terms of willingness to pay more for next-gen leather, over half (62%) of enthusiastic consumers were likely to pay more.

Screen Shot 2021-08-11 at 9.34.16 AM.png
  • Enthusiastic consumers were motivated to purchase next-gen leather for multiple reasons, including the environment (72% reported it to be highly influential), quality (72%), animal welfare (68%), personal expression (61%), and cost (56%).

Screen Shot 2021-08-11 at 9.34.23 AM.png

Learn more

  • We have also conducted a US pilot study on leather alternatives and a US nomenclature study for the overall materials category. 

  • We are in the process of conducting a segmentation study in the US to understand consumer attitudes, perspectives of desirability and functionality, and purchase interest in common types of next-gen products. We expect to publish this study in September 2021.

  • The reports are available for download at

bottom of page