There are plenty of food additives that are just fine to eat, and many of them even have scary-sounding chemical names. This doesn't mean that all food additives are bad OR that all food additives are good. While it would be much simpler to make generalizations and label things either good or bad, it's not quite that simple, unless you want to only eat food with a very limited shelf life. Some preservatives reduce food waste and have undetectable effects on the nutritional benefits of the foods they preserve. On the other hand, there are some toxic substances that should be avoided, and they can be all-natural (eg. arsenic) or have some anthropogenic origin.
If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post