Top Champagne houses are pulling out the stops to revive falling sales with revamped packaging and uplifts in marketing activity.

Taittinger is revamping the livery of its entire Cuvée range, while Lanson is launching a new gift pack for Christmas.

The activity comes as sales figures suggest consumers are deserting the Champagne category and switching to more affordable sparkling wines. Champagne volumes have sunk 15% and value has slumped 9% for the year to mid-June [Nielsen].

The new look across the six-strong Taittinger range would boost sales by having a "stronger unity" to the designs, said Lynn Murray, marketing director for Taittinger UK agent Hatch Mansfield, with smaller labels and a consistent logo on all bottles rolled out this month.

"Taittinger's sales have largely followed the overall market trend for Champagne so far this year," said Murray. "While the impact of the recession is being keenly felt by all Champagne producers, and the situation over the next year remains unclear, we are confident the market will revive as consumer interest in luxury products revives. In the meantime, refreshing brands and focusing on quality will help us to ride out a challenging time."

Meanwhile, Lanson is launching an "affordable" revamped gift box for its Black Label Brut Champagne in time for Christmas. The pack will include a mini 20cl bottle of the Champagne with a selection of milk chocolate and praline truffles, and carries an rsp of £11 to £13.

"The Champagne industry, Lanson included, saw phenomenal growth in the few years leading up to 2008," said Paul Beavis, MD of Champagne Lanson UK. "To a large extent this year's slowing down was to be expected regardless of the economic downturn."

Marketing innovation and a spotlight on quality was the right strategy for Champagne suppliers in a difficult economy, said Spar wine buyer Dror Nativ. "It's important suppliers don't have a kneejerk reaction to the downturn and cut their retail prices as this puts brands at risk of being devalued," he said.