@Iluviaporos - There's a really interesting non-fiction book called Salt that goes into some detail about food preservation and preparation in the past. I've got to admit, I'm glad we don't ferment fish very much these days. It sounded like it probably smelled really gross.
I'd rather just cook my food fresh. It seems like either preservation is either risky because it might go wrong, or risky because the chemicals aren't that safe.
And vegetables, in particular, taste the best when they have been processed or cooked as little as possible.