VINELAND — The town called "the home of Progresso" in a commercial will lose that title after General Mills officially announced plans to close their plant in Vineland.

The company announced Monday that the plant will close during the first quarter of 2018 putting 370 employees out of work. Severance and transition benefits will be provided to the affected employees. The company will move the production of soup products to its other facilities.

"Today's news makes me so angry about how General Mills handled this and the loss it is to Cumberland County and the South Jersey area. If Progresso's corporate leaders had acted in good faith and gave the union, the city and the state - everyone that had an interest in this on a number of levels - the opportunity to create a competitive counteroffer, then something could have been done to save the plant and the jobs of those dedicated workers," Congressman Frank LoBiondo said in a post on his Facebook page.

General Mills said its had made a tentative decision to leave pending negotiations with the employee union, but offered no additional details.

Progresso has operated the facility in Vineland since 1942. General Mills took over the brand in 2001.

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