Whirlpool Corp. announced Monday that it is laying off a portion of its U.S. workforce in response to unexpected costs that the company attributes to the COVID-19 pandemic. The layoffs are in part hitting Whirlpool’s salaried workforce. Here in Southwest Michigan about 4,000 residents are employed by the appliance maker.

BENTON HARBOR — Whirlpool Corp. has been paying close attention to dishes for decades.

But recently the Benton Harbor appliance maker teamed up with University of Michigan researchers to see if dishwashers use less energy and water than traditional hand-washing techniques.

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